Apple’s Trade In site has a new look, but the same old disappointing prices

A laptop screen on a blue background showing the Apple Trade In website
(Image credit: Future)

Apple has launched a redesigned version of its Trade In website to help you swap your current Apple device for a new one, but the same old prices mean you may be better off looking elsewhere.

The refreshed Apple Trade In site is now easier to use, with its top navigation bar allowing you to choose an iPhone, Apple Watch, iPad, Mac, Android phone or Other Product to trade in. 

The big change is a new section showing you the difference between trading in your device online or in store, with the latter giving you an exact value (rather than an estimate) on the spot. Interestingly, Apple has removed mentions of its Daisy robot, which disassembles iPhones into recyclable parts, although this is still mentioned on Apple's environment page.

But beyond the site's new sheen, there is unfortunately no great improvement to Apple's actual trade-in prices. In general, these prices aren't particularly good compared to the many alternatives, which include phone carrier trade-in offers, comparison sites such as Flipsy (in the US) or simply selling privately on the likes of eBay or Facebook Marketplace.

That said, the Apple Trade In site is the most hassle-free option if you're looking to swap your old Apple device for a new one, and you can also be sure that it'll go to one of the tech giant's approved recycling partners. 

But there's also no guarantee that Apple will recycle your old device. Instead, Apple says it will be "thoroughly inspected and assessed for reuse for recycling". This process, which can include reselling your old tech, is all factored into its prices. 

Still, using a trade-in service like Apple's a better option than letting your old device gather dust in a drawer, and according to a recent report from the analysts at Consumer Intelligence Research Partners (CIRP), iPhone owners are far more likely to trade in their old phones than Android fans. According to the report, 43% of iPhone owners trade in their old phones, compared to only 14% of Android users.

Analysis: The price of convenience

A laptop on a blue background showing the Apple Trade In website

(Image credit: Future)

Apple's trade-in prices do tend to fluctuate throughout the year – and we still highly recommend trading in your old iPhone in August rather than waiting for the iPhone 15 to launch in September, when prices for older Apple phones will likely drop.

But despite some small variations over the year, the prices on Apple's Trade In site are nearly always below the ones you can get from the alternatives. For example, in the table below you can see the extra value it's possible to get on an iPhone 13 Pro or iPhone 13 by checking comparison sites, retailers or private sales.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Example iPhone trade-in / sale prices
ServiceiPhone 13 ProiPhone 13
Apple Trade-Inup to $500 / £485 / AU$830up to $400 / £390 / AU$655
ItsWorthMore (US)up to $686$523
GadgetGone (US)up to $704$531
Swappa (US)up to $654up to $533
Carphone Warehouse (UK)up to £530up to £430
JB Hi-Fi (Australia)up to AU$700up to AU$550
eBay (typical price)up to $849 / £700up to $599 / £525

Still, there are certainly benefits to going the Apple Trade In route, namely the convenience of having one place to both trade in and buy a new Apple device –particularly if you do this in-store, rather than waiting the estimated "two to three weeks" for the online trade-in process.

And the small improvements to Apple's Trade In site do at least fit into a broader environmental policy that recently saw the tech giant committing to using 100% recycled cobalt in all Apple-made batteries by 2025.

Mark Wilson
Senior news editor

Mark is TechRadar's Senior news editor. Having worked in tech journalism for a ludicrous 17 years, Mark is now attempting to break the world record for the number of camera bags hoarded by one person. He was previously Cameras Editor at both TechRadar and Trusted Reviews, Acting editor on, as well as Features editor and Reviews editor on Stuff magazine. As a freelancer, he's contributed to titles including The Sunday Times, FourFourTwo and Arena. And in a former life, he also won The Daily Telegraph's Young Sportswriter of the Year. But that was before he discovered the strange joys of getting up at 4am for a photo shoot in London's Square Mile.