eBay’s new Instant Selling program turns old smartphones into new money

Let’s face it, we all have that one desk drawer filled with old phones that we promise ourselves we’ll sell — when we can get around to it. With eBay’s new Instant Selling program for smartphones, the process might now be a little bit easier.

With Instant Selling you’ll receive an instant voucher after listing your device, to be used toward the purchase of a new phone through eBay. That’s also after you find out whether your phone is even eligible for the service. You can access the service via a mobile web browser or on desktop, at which point you’ll be asked to enter your device information — such as the model, color, capacity, and carrier. Once all the details are filled in, you’ll receive an instant quote if it’s eligible.

If you’re satisfied with the price, it will then prompt you to add images of the phone. When you’re done, simply click “List it,” (which also means you’re simultaneously agreeing to eBay’s terms and conditions), and you’ll then be able to claim your instant eBay voucher. It’ll be automatically added to your account to use whenever you’re ready.

You’ll notice there’s also a “No, thanks” option that you can choose when viewing how much your voucher is worth. This is for if you don’t want to go through the program to sell your device; you can instead opt to do it yourself on eBay through the standard selling process.

But since the program is extremely new, there are some restrictions when it comes to eligibility, depending on your carrier and device. For now, the only phones that can be listed through Instant Selling include the Samsung Galaxy S7 to S9+, the iPhone 6S 16GB model all the way up to the iPhone X 256GB, and any devices that are unlocked. The phones will also have to be under AT&T or Verizon, but any phones under Sprint and T-Mobile will be eligible starting in November, along with Google Pixel phones and certain LG products.

After listing your phone, the Instant Selling program provides you with a shipping label to print. You’ll then have to pack up your phone and ship it out within two business days.

“Millions of Americans have unused phones in their homes and simply don’t realize how much their devices are worth, probably because trade-in values are typically so low,” said Alyssa Steele, vice president of hard goods at eBay, said in a press release. “With Instant Selling, people can find out exactly how much their phone is worth, and sell their phone within a matter of minutes to immediately help fund the holidays, or maybe something off their personal wish list.”

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According to eBay, those who use Instant Selling to get rid of old smartphones will make more money than if they were to sell through Gazelle and EcoATM. The same goes for trading in devices to carriers such as AT&T and Verizon, as well as the Apple Give Back program.

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