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Apple buying iPhone 4Ses ahead of expected iPhone 5 launch

A 64GB iPhone 4S in excellent shape will net owners up to $345 on an Apple gift card -- just in time to buy the new device, expected to be unveiled next month.


As if we needed any more proof that we are mere weeks from seeing a new iPhone, Apple appears to be making room for the new device by taking the old one off consumers' hands.

Depending on the iPhone's condition, Apple will pay up to $345 for the year-old device. Owners can use Apple's Recycling Program to determine how much their device is worth by inputting its model, color, and condition. The big-money goes to the 64GB iPhone 4S in excellent condition, black or white, apparently.

After the device is evaluated by a third party (prepaid shipping options available), owners will receive an Apple gift card good for use at a retail location or at Apple's online store -- just in time to buy the new iPhone, which is expected to be unveiled September 12.

Of course, there's no guarantee that owners will get top dollar for their device.

Apple isn't the only one buying used iPhones, though. As my colleague Rick Broida pointed out a week ago, Amazon is offering some of the highest trade-in values seen on used iPhones. An AT&T iPhone 4S 32GB in perfect working condition is worth up to $455 to the Internet retailer. But like Apple, Amazon's payout comes in the form of a gift card.