This quarter, our collection of data reflects one of the most active times of the year: Upgrade Season. This report sheds light on top devices that have been turned in through trade-in and upgrade programs, the average trade-in value of devices, dollars put into the hands of consumers for trading in their devices, and more.
Our data shows trade-in programs have remained strong while returning over $757 million to consumers, a 33% increase as compared to $571 million in Q2 and $569 million in the same quarter last year. As 5G becomes more and more popular, we expect to see this number continue to increase.
The iPhone XR remains the top turned-in device through trade-in and upgrade programs for the third quarter in a row. The Galaxy S9 has remained the top Samsung device for the past 5 quarters. The iPhone XR is followed by iPhone 8, iPhone 11, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X.
The average age of Android Smartphones and iPhones at turn in was 3.32 years – slightly longer compared to 3.15 years from the previous quarter.
Online Trade-Ins See a Spike
During the pandemic, our data showed a large jump in online trade-ins. Though retail stores are back fully open, consumers have become increasingly comfortable shopping online and this is extending to conducting their trade-ins online also. We saw a 187% increase in online trades in Q3 2021 compared to Q3 of 2020 and a 162% increase in online trades compared to the previous quarter.
Furthermore, customers are taking advantage of being able to purchase their device in-store and complete their trade at home. This allows them to make sure all of their important data, such as contacts and pictures have been properly backed up. Once that is completed, customers can drop off or send their devices in themselves.
Getting More for What You Paid For
The average price of an iPhone trade-in was $207.31 in the third quarter, while the average price of an Android smartphone trade-in was $108.24, creating a 10% increase in the average trade-in price over the previous quarter. This brings the total average trade-in price between the IOS iPhone and Android’s Smartphone to an impressive $150.38. This has steadily increased from the same quarter last year’s price of $121.03, adding an average of $30 value to trade-ins.
Consumers are continuing to take advantage of a trade-in when upgrading their smartwatches. The Series 6 Apple Watch provided an average trade-in value of $216 during the third quarter.
Attractive trade-in values can deliver that extra incentive needed to encourage a consumer to upgrade their device because it becomes more affordable. It also decreases the likelihood that the consumer will toss their old phone into a drawer never to be used again. Every trade-in that accompanies an upgrade is a step in the right direction to extend the device’s lifecycle and a decrease in e-waste created by improperly discarded devices.
Your Best Bet During Upgrade Season
During Upgrade Season, your best bet is to create easily accessible opportunities for your customers. As a carrier, OEM, retailer, or cable operator it’s important to help consumers find the best deals for their device. This maximizes their trade-in value, increases affordability, and incentivizes a sustainable approach.