Sell your old iPhone to Gazelle

As discussed in a previous post, if you still have a lot of time on your contract, you'll pay more than $199/$299 for a new iPhone 3G S. (I did read, though, that an exception is being made for those who bought their iPhone 3G less than a month before the announcement.) If you are indeed eligible for the lowest subsidized price, or if you're going to bite the bullet and get a new 3G S even though you'll have to pay a couple hundred more, then the question arises what to do with your old iPhone. Gazelle will buy it from you. A company rep told me that in 2009 they've paid an average of $153 for used iPhones.

A major part of their mission is to aid people in being environmentally responsible — and they even send you a box to use to ship your iPhone or other used gadget to them, as well as giving you free shipping. If that's not motivation enough, Gazelle is giving away $199 to subsidize the cost of the new phone (or whatever else) each week via a Twitter contest.

How the contest works: To encourage a responsible iPhone upgrade, Gazelle will be kicking off a contest surrounding the new iPhone release this Friday. Twitter followers will be encouraged to eulogize their old PDAs and cell phones in 140 characters or less via Twitter and use the #RIPhone hash tag. Gazelle will then randomly pick a Twitter user’s eulogy each week on Fridays at Noon PT/3 pm ET and gift them $199 (towards the new iPhone or whatever they choose). This will continue until the day the new iPhone is released (June 19).

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To use their service, you simply log on to Gazelle to calculate the value of your unwanted item(s) by answering a few brief questions. Then you are sent a free box along with a pre-paid shipping label.

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Jim Karpen holds a Ph.D. in literature and writing, and has a love of gizmos. His doctoral dissertation focused on the revolutionary consequences of digital technologies and anticipated some of the developments taking place in the industry today. Jim has been writing about the Internet and technology since 1994 and has been using Apple's visionary products for decades.