Gazelle phone trade-in program is shutting down

Many might no longer be familiar with Gazelle but the company has, for years, cornered the trade-in market for smartphones. It made a name for itself first with iPhone trade-ins and then moved on to include even Android phones. Its business even put it into a position to discern market trends when it comes to what consumers are will to let go in exchange for a different device. Unfortunately, it seems that this particular aspect of Gazelle's business has been hit hard this year and it will be retiring the trade-in program in a month's time.

Gazelle pretty much started out in the business of buying used smartphones and giving owners some cash for it. Of course, it also sold these phones again after being refurbished, allowing consumers to switch to a different brand or upgrade to a new phone faster than they would if they waited for their carrier to offer subsidies and deals. That, however, may precisely be the reason Gazelle has decided to end its trade-ins.

That business worked well in the past but both manufacturers and carriers have started offering more enticing financing options for new phones. More people in the US have also started practically leasing their phones, paying less with the option to upgrade when a new model comes around. Even Apple has its own trade-in program that makes Gazelle's version redundant.

That said, Gazelle will still continue operating and will focus instead on its other form of trade-in. Its parent company ecoATM has kiosks across the country that will offer instant cash in exchange for your phones. It will also continue selling pre-owned devices that were sourced from this.

Gazelle's mail-in trade-in program ends on January 31st, 2021, and will no longer accept trade-ins beyond that date. Those with trade-ins that are already in process will continue as normal, at least for one last time.