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How to trade in your iPhone 8 for an iPhone X

Need the notch? Learn how to sell your new iPhone 8 for the newer iPhone X.

Your iPhone 8 ($160 at Amazon) is the latest and greatest iPhone right now, but it won't be shortly when the iPhone X ($239 at Amazon) is released. Are feelings of buyer's remorse starting to creep in? You aren't alone. iPhone 8 trade-ins are a thing. Here's what you need to know about swapping out your iPhone 8 or iPhone 8 Plus ($194 at Amazon) for the iPhone X.

You'll have to pay it off

If you purchased your iPhone 8 on an installment payment plan, then you will need to pay off the balance before you can sell it. If you're in the iPhone Upgrade Program, you can upgrade but will need to do a little legwork. 

Read the Terms & Conditions of the Upgrade Program and you'll notice that the Early Upgrade Option states you can make advance payments to become eligible six months after enrolling. That means iPhone 8 owners, who are only a month or so into their upgrade program, would need to wait nearly another five months before becoming upgrade eligible. 

That didn't seem right to me, so I called my local Apple Store and asked a representative if I could upgrade my iPhone 8 as soon as the iPhone X is released. The rep informed me that, yes, I could upgrade as soon as the iPhone X hits, but I would need to call Citizens One (1-888-201-6306) to pay off my loan. And after paying this sum to bring me up to the equivalent of 12 installment payments, I would be upgrade eligible and could trade in my suddenly outdated iPhone 8 for the shiny and new iPhone X.

Back up, then erase

Before you box up your iPhone 8 and ship it off, you need to prepare it for sale by removing your personal information. Here's what to do:

If you have an Apple Watch ($251 at eBay), unpair it from your iPhone. Open the Watch app, tap the My Watch tab, tap your watch, tap the little "i" button next to it and then tap Unpair Apple Watch.

Perform one last backup of your iPhone to iTunes or iCloud so you have a recent profile to grab when setting up your new iPhone X.

Sign out of both iCloud and iTunes & App Store. Open Settings, tap your profile at the top, scroll down to the bottom and tap Sign Out

Erase your personal information. Go to Settings > General > Reset > Erase All Content and Settings.

Gather the accessories

Since you've had the iPhone 8 for only a month or so, it shouldn't be too difficult to gather all of the accessories that came with it. Here's the list:

  • EarPods with Lightning Connector
  • Lightning-to-USB Cable
  • Lightning-to-3.5mm Headphone Jack Adapter
  • USB Power Adapter

Sell it -- but not through Apple

Because they are only a little more than a month old, neither the iPhone 8 nor the iPhone 8 Plus are listed on Apple's trade-up site. Without Apple as a trade-in partner, you will need to look at a third-party trade-in site such as Decluttr or Swappa (but not the popular Gazelle, which has yet to add either iPhone 8 model). Or you could, of course, try your luck with eBay or Craigslist. Hunt around for best deal. 

At the time of this writing, Decluttr will pay roughly $415-$430 (depending on the carrier) for a 64GB iPhone 8, $450-$500 for a 256GB iPhone 8, $515-$530 for a 64GB iPhone 8 Plus and $600-$630 for a 256GB iPhone 8 Plus.

Get ready for the iPhone X

Before you pull the trigger on an iPhone 8 sale, be sure you have an iPhone X purchase lined up. Supplies will be severely limited at launch, but there are ways to increase your odds of getting an iPhone X.