Several new trade-in programs will let you obtain with a two-year contract an iPhone 6 for free—and also leave you with extra cash
If you’re desperate for an iPhone 6, then you’re in luck: Competing trade-in programs between major U.S. carriers have made it so that many customers will not only get a free iPhone 6, but also some extra cash.
Verizon announced Tuesday a new trade-in program in which customers swap in their old iPhones and sign a two-year contract for a free iPhone 6, according to Verizon. Specifically, Verizon will collect working iPhones of the 4, 4S, 5, 5S and 5C models in exchange for a $200 gift card, which can then be credited to the $199 16GB iPhone 6.
Verizon’s deal, while glamorous, isn’t actually the best one you can get—but it’s probably the most convenient. Several other trade in programs through non-wireless carriers have surfaced offering more lucrative deals, though they haven’t yet announced when and if they’ll carry the iPhone 6. Walmart, for example, is offering $300 for a 16GB iPhone 5, and Amazon is offering $225 for a 16GB iPhone 5. All of these offers are independent of your wireless carrier.
If you’re not a Verizon customer, then there’s even better news—not only will your iPhone 6 probably be free, you’ll likely also profit from it.
Sprint and T-Mobile both announced trade-in programs that will match buyback programs of all major U.S. carriers—including Verizon. While Sprint currently offers deals with credit up to $300, T-Mobile has said it’ll not only match all major buyback programs, but it’ll also add an extra $50. In other words: if you’re with T-Mobile, you’ll be profiting at least $50 from your trade-in program. AT&T told TIME it will announce its trade-in program by Sept. 12, when pre-orders of the iPhone 6 begin.
It’s unusual for carriers to offer such heavy discounts for a new product, but the nationwide craze for Apple’s latest product is a prime opportunity for carriers to steal and attract new customers. Generally, prices of older models are often slashed to maintain sales and attract new customers: Several major carriers sell the older iPhone 4S at 99 cents with at two-year contract. And in some cases, new products that are performing far below expectations—like Amazon’s Fire phone—are offered at steep discounts to remain afloat in the market.
If you do decide to participate in one of the many trade-in programs, here’s what you need to know about getting rid of your old iPhone.