Apple iPhone trade-in program in the works

Apple is working on an iPhone trade-in program which may allow customers to get a bit of cash for their older iPhone models to upgrade to an iPhone 5.

The report comes from Bloomberg and it said that the iPhone trade-in program should be kicked off later this month and it also said that Apple will be teaming with Brightstar to pull this off.

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The Apple iPhone trade-in program itself isn’t new, as carriers and stores like Radio Shack have been offering these types of programs but it would be a different beast because Apple is getting involved directly. The report suggests that part of the motivation for the Apple iPhone trade-in program would be to allow it to get customers to upgrade to the latest model and also give it stock to sell in other markets.

A recent IDC report found that emerging markets like India, China and Indonesia are going to account for the bulk of future smartphone sales and Apple doesn’t really have products that are in the proper price range for these markets. An Apple iPhone trade-in program could help it get a nice stock of iPhone 4S and iPhone 4 units which it could sell in other markets.

Of course, there are also a ton of rumors that Apple is preparing to produce a cheaper iPhone and this could also be an excellent product for the emerging markets. Most of the competing smartphones in these areas cost less than $300 without a long-term contract, so if Apple entered this market, look for the cheaper iPhone to cost about the same.

Would an Apple iPhone trade-in program entice you to get the latest iPhone? If this report turns out to be true, look for the announcement at next week’s WWDC keynote.

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