That old smartphone is worth more than you think

It's not difficult to find online buyers for your old smartphones, and these three sites can help you get the best prices.

Galaxy S5

Galaxy S5

Credit: Maurizio Pesce/CC 2.0 license

If you're lusting after Samsung's hot new Galaxy S6 but are put off by the price, there's a way to shelter your bank account and still buy the new smartphone of your dreams: Sell your old one.

Last or past generation Galaxys, iPhones, and HTCs are still in demand, and it's easier than ever to sell them. And there's no shortage of sites that either buy phones directly or hook you up with buyers, including Glyde.com, Gazelle.com and Nextworth.com. Plenty more of these sites exist, but these three are representative and none has a significant number of complaints. (Check out this post I wrote last fall for tips on how to get the most money for your used smartphone.)

The new Galaxy S6, like the iPhone 6, is pricey. U.S. wireless carriers plan to sell the 32GB Samsung Galaxy S6  for between $650 and $685 without a contract, and you'll spend another $100 to $129 in premium pricing for its stylish cousin, the GS6 edge. Both will be available for purchase on Friday.

How much can you get for your old phone? Obviously, the number varies by model, age, condition of the device and the carrier. Prices also tend to vary from resale site to site, and you can assume that the longer you wait to sell, the less money you'll get.

Here are some representative offers for older Samsung Galaxys from Glyde:

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 16GB - Black - AT&T: $133
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 16GB - Blue - Sprint: $78
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 16GB - White - T-Mobile: $151

And here are some prices for iPhones from Glyde:

  • iPhone 4s 16GB - White - Verizon: $62
  • iPhone 4s 16GB - White - T-Mobile: $90
  • iPhone 4s 16GB - Black - Sprint: $29
  • iPhone 4S 16GB - Black - AT&T: $79

I went to Nextworth.com and searched for a price on the black, 16GB AT&T Galaxy S4, and the offer was significantly lower — just $73. The popular HTC One M8 (32GB) will net you $235 on Glyde, but only $113 on Nextworth and $175 on Gazelle.

As I mentioned, these prices are rather fluid, so I recommend checking your specific model on a few sites before you decide to sell your old phone. And while some companies say they will delete all of your personal data when they receive your phone, it's a good idea to wipe your device yourself — just to be safe.

This story, "That old smartphone is worth more than you think" was originally published by CIO.

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