In this crazy day and age, there are a few inarguable truths: people still can’t find a PlayStation 5; TikTok challenges still don’t make any sense; and people are still obsessed with iPhones. While there’s not a lot of mystery surrounding the previous things (supply and demand, and…okay, we can’t figure out the other one), but what is it about iPhones that continues to draw people in year after year? Well, being a reliable brand and all, it’s hard to compete with Apple’s quality.
With premium materials, envelope-pushing technology, and nice features for the eyes, Apple’s iPhones consistently up the ante on what a smartphone can be. Plus, with long-term access to the latest iOS updates for even the oldest iPhones, Apple fans can keep using their favorite model long past the average upgrade cycle.
All of this adds up to yet another benefit for iPhone owners: consistently higher resale values compared to their Android counterparts. In fact, while brands such as Google and Huawei decrease around 67% and 74%, respectively, in value over 12 months, that’s a far cry from the approximately 43% depreciation rate of iPhones annually. That’s a sizable chunk of change that’s left over when you’re ready to upgrade.
By now, you’ve probably upgraded to a newer model like the iPhone 12 or 13, but if you have an iPhone 7 lying around, you can still get a pretty good value out of it, provided it’s not crushed under your grandmother’s old crockpot.
So, how much can you expect to get for your phone? Let’s find out below!
A device that’s well over five years old (it was introduced back in September 2016), the iPhone 7 was a future-facing smartphone cloaked in familiar packaging (minus a headphone jack, of course – not that we’re bitter). Since discontinued by Apple, you can still buy the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus at third-party outlets for around $300 and $400, respectively (down from their original $649 and $769), making them an excellent option for those on a budget. (And a lot of us feel that right now.)
Of course, with the recent arrival of the iPhone 13, you might be tempted to finally spring for an upgrade and are wondering what your iPhone 7 is worth. In general, the resale value for either the regular or the iPhone Plus 7 device will rely on various things:
|•||Condition – Dents, cracked back glass, and functional damage (it happens): No matter the problem, it’ll cost you. Even a few shallow scratches can lower your buyback quote around 23%. So make sure you look over your device first.|
|•||Carrier – Have a carrier-unlocked or Verizon phone (all phones on the Verizon network are unlocked 60 days from purchase automatically)? That’ll help your resale value. For everyone else, expect your iPhone’s resale value to drop.|
|•||Payment – Cash is nice, but opting for store credit might net you a higher payout, though it’s limited on how you spend it, depending on the retailer.|
|•||Storage size – The bigger the storage size, the better the payout. Simple.|
All things considered, an iPhone 7 is worth between $30 and $81 while an iPhone 7 Plus is worth between $55 and $145. These specific resale values are for devices in good condition with 256GB of storage on the Verizon network.
Accordingly, your own offer will depend on the specifics for your device. For example, an iPhone 7 that can’t turn on likely wouldn’t be worth anything at most places. In contrast, an iPhone 7 Plus that has never been activated would net you a cool $230 at GadgetGone.
Before you commit to trading in your old iPhone 7, you first may want to do some resale value window-shopping. Believe it or not, resale values can vary widely – sometimes double or more – depending on which buyback option you use. Sure, snagging $55 from ecoATM might sound tempting, but it’s a far cry from the $145 you can get for an iPhone 7 Plus at GadgetGone. Likewise, getting $85 in Best Buy store credit for your used iPhone 7 is great, but not the best option if you’re looking for cold hard cash.
So, whether you’re upgrading or looking for some moolah, always keep your options open. Incorporate buyback sites such as GadgetGone and other options like ecoATM, Amazon, and GameStop, along with your carrier, Apple Trade In, and big-box retailers. Get extra mileage out of your resale value with limited-time promotions or price-matching as well (this is particularly true with select trade-ins with retailers, but, again, no cash).
With a little time and effort, you’re sure to find a buyback program (and payout) that fits your needs.
To give you a jump on the competition, we put together an up-to-date list (as of January 2022) of resale values from a collection of buyback options. As with the above values, the following prices are for either an iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus with 256GBs of storage in good condition on the Verizon network. Once again, your specific offer will depend on your own iPhone’s specifications, size and condition.
|iPhone 7||iPhone 7 Plus|
|Amazon Trade-In (store credit)||$43||$61|
|Best Buy Trade-In (store credit)||$40||$90|
|GameStop Trade-In (store credit)||$76||$137|
|Apple Trade In (store credit)||$40||$100|
|AT&T Trade-In Program (store credit)||$35||$45|
|T-Mobile Trade-In Program (store credit)||$36||$45|
|Verizon Device Trade-In Program (store credit)||$36||$48|
Some of these could be intriguing (especially our offers), but feel free to check out our reviews of Amazon Trade-In, Best Buy Trade-In, ecoATM, GameStop Trade-In, Apple Trade In, AT&T Trade-In, T-Mobile Trade-In, and Verizon Device Trade-In before you make a decision.
Want to sell your device? Don’t sleep on your research. Thanks to a constantly fluctuating resale marketplace, trade-in values are always changing. However, this is especially true in the 24 hours after a new iPhone is launched. Even though a new iPhone isn’t likely to be introduced tomorrow, once one is, the resale value of a previous device can fall 30%. This year, don’t be surprised if that depreciation rate falls closer to 60% once a new model is eventually introduced.
In other words, if you come across an offer you like, lock it in. “But didn’t you just say I should take my time comparison shopping?” Yep, and luckily, these two things are not mutually exclusive.
Many buyback programs will lock in your offer for several days (GadgetGone, for example, locks in your price quote for 14 days – two weeks!). Plus, since quotes are obligation-free, you can keep stacking up offers – and locking down high resale values—until you find one that meets your needs. If that’s not a win, we’re not sure what is.
Again, we cannot reiterate the importance of one thing that can have a huge impact on your iPhone 7’s resale value: its condition. Once your phone has been received by whichever buyback program you choose, its condition (i.e. cosmetic and functional issues) will be assessed both by hand and with software. (And keep in mind that some companies, like Amazon, outsource to more articulate third-party examiners, instead of doing everything in-house.)
Should the results of that evaluation not match the condition status you gave when first getting a quote, your offer will be adjusted accordingly. It’s definitely frustrating, but it happens.. To save your future self from any potential grief, be as accurate and honest as possible when selecting your iPhone’s condition. That means pointing out any cracks, dents, or technical issues with the phone. They’ll make all the difference between getting top value and bottom dollar.
What if your quote gets lowered and you decide to change your mind on the trade-in? Not all hope is lost. GadgetGone, along with many other buyback options, will gladly send your phone back to you for free (or for a small shipping fee, for some trade-in programs) with no questions asked. This isn’t the case with all companies, however. For some (such as Verizon), once you’ve sent in your phone, there’s no getting it back.
So take the time, do your research, find an offer that’s right for you, lock it in, and move up to a new iPhone model!
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