What to do if you want to sell your used iPhone quickly and easily? GIGA explains how to prepare your iPhone (or iPad) for sale and where to get rid of it on the Internet.
Sell used iPhone: Prepare your smartphone
If you want to sell your used iPhone (or iPad) on the Internet, you have to make sure that you only send the hardware and no data to the buyer before selling it. That means: Before selling, you have to save data such as contacts, photos and music in another location if you want to keep them. Only then should you reset the device to the factory settings – that's the easier part.
Make a backup: What type of Apple user am I?
How you prepare your iPhone for a sale depends on how much you move around the Apple universe.
The simplest case : You are not only an iPhone, but also a Mac user and you also use iCloud , you may even have bought additional storage. If you have activated the corresponding iCloud services for notes, contacts, the calendar, reminders and (if there is enough memory) also for photos in the iCloud settings on the iPhone, you are already backing up contacts, media and more: you are already in the cloud available and are also stored, for example on your own Mac or an iPad – at least, registered though there's own iCloud account and the services are activated. You can also check which data is in the cloud in your browser at icloud.com. If the data is complete, you can reset the iPhone directly to the factory settings (see next step).
No iCloud space for photos : A typical scenario: You use the free 5 GB storage space in the iCloud for notes, various app data and contacts, but there is not enough memory for photos. If you don't want to buy additional storage, you can now connect your iPhone to a computer and transfer all pictures and videos to a Mac or PC by cable .
Backing up data without iCloud : This is also possible with a backup of the iPhone – with iTunes (or via iCloud). If you use macOS Big Sur (or higher), you won't find the backup option in iTunes, but in the Finder. Of course, this backup solution only makes sense if you buy a new one after selling the used iPhone. The new iPhone can then be restored from the local (or iCloud) backup.
Sign out and reset
Unpair from iPhone: Apple Watch and iCloud Please log out: iCloud and "iTunes & App Store" should be deactivated on the iPhone (see GIGA instructions). Your Apple ID will of course be retained, only the cell phone is then exempt from this connection. If you have coupled with the iPhone an Apple Watch, you must decouple before the sale (see GIGA instructions). Reset to factory settings
Once all the data has been saved, the iPhone is reset to the factory settings – this is the only way buying services (e.g. reBuy) or an eBay buyer can do something with it.
This is how you do it :
Open the settings on the iPhone. Now select the General area. Scroll down and select Reset . Select Erase All Content & Settings to factory reset iPhone.
Money for the old iPhone: which buying service is the right one?
Buying services promise quick and uncomplicated processing when selling a used iPhone. The process is always the same: You can find information about your device on the service's website, assess its condition and explain whether the original accessories are available .
Which iPhone do I have? – this is how you find out
You can offer your iPhone, for example, at reBuy, Flip4New and Zoxs and other buying services. Of course, it is worthwhile to take a look at all services to see how much your own device will bring in the event of a successful purchase – there are definitely differences . Once you have decided on an offer, you usually print out a shipping label, bring the iPhone well packaged to the post office or, if possible, arrange a pick-up.
Here you can find out more about reBuy and get alternatives :
Is reBuy serious: Experiences and reviews reBuy alternatives: The 6 best sites (+1 bonus tip)
After sending in the iPhone, you don't just have to wait, you also have to hope: Because the original purchase price does not always stay the same – for example, if the purchase service evaluates less than you or you discover further scratches. Then you receive a new offer and decide: Do I want my iPhone back or do I have the new purchase price paid out to me?
Sometimes it can be worthwhile to try another service , even if the one that made a worse offer in the first evaluation. The author, who has already used various purchasing services several times, knows: a little luck is also part of it . Sometimes your own assessment and the purchase price issued at the end diverge widely. Quirks that don't bother you are obviously deal breakers in sales. A look at review portals such as Trustpilot – here, for example, the review for rebuy – cannot hurt when comparing the buying services, but it is not a guarantee that the price offer will ultimately correspond to your own ideas. Especially since some reviews at reBuy also refer to the purchase of devices. An example from our own experience: Flip4New bought a functional Apple Watch for half the new price, while reBuy would have thrown the device into the electronic scrap for just under one euro.
Interesting for everyone who wants to swap a used iPhone for an iPhone 13 – here is our assessment of the current Apple smartphones :
Or would you prefer eBay?
Last resort eBay? Well, almost: If you can't get anything from the buying service because your own iPhone may be in abundance on the market or has scratches that the buying service cannot ignore, you can still get something out of eBay (always minus the sales commission of 11%). Here you have a little more effort , but you can score with other things : For example with a good story . Means: If you have the original packaging, invoice and accessories together accurately, you can make an impression and show that I have treated this device with care.
How does eBay work? – well here
Anyone who has used eBay before will not have any major problems setting up an iPhone: The item characteristics are usually assigned automatically and correctly. You should make an effort with the photos . Sounds obvious, but is criminally disregarded by many private sellers. Therefore: clean your iPhone well and present quirks honestly. And always switch on the display: Nobody likes to spend money on a “dead” device. And then there is still the question: Fixed price or auction? In the past few years, the Buy It Now option has become increasingly popular . Especially with items such as iPhones, which are widely available, bidding battles are unlikely to happen anyway. If you have a good overall package, you should specify a (still) realistic desired price and activate the option for price proposals. If there are several interested parties, you not only have the choice between prices, but also between buyers.