Amazon wants to buy your used gadgets

Online retailer will offer Amazon gift cards in exchange for your used tablets, cell phones, MP3 players, cameras, and GPS devices.

Amazon announced today it is expanding its trade-in program to allow customers to swap their used electronics for Amazon gift cards.

The online retailer said it will accept used tablets, cell phones, MP3 players, cameras, and GPS devices, regardless of where the items were purchased. Would-be electronics recyclers can search Amazon's Trade-in page for items being accepted for credit. Offered trade-in values range from 25 cents for a variety of cell phones to $480 for Apple's iPad 2.

Customers indicate the condition of the item ("Like New," "Good," or " Acceptable") and print out a pre-paid shipping label. After Amazon receives and inspects the items, the gift cards are deposited in the customer's Amazon account, usually within 48 hours, Amazon said. Rejected items are returned to the customer within 14 days at no cost.

Up to now, the program had only accepted used video games (media and hardware), DVDs, and textbooks.

"Hundreds of thousands of customers have already received millions of dollars in gift cards from the other products in our program," Paul Ryder, vice president of electronics for Amazon, said in a statement. "The electronics category is a natural extension and we are delighted to offer our customers more trade-in options."

Earlier this year, Best Buy launched a buy-back service designed to lessen consumers' concerns about tech obsolescence. After purchasing a TV, mobile phone, laptop, Netbook, or tablet at Best Buy, the buyer has two years to bring it back and get a percentage of the purchase price as long as it's in good condition.

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