Amazon.com has begun buying back used electronics, courtesy of a new technology trade-in program that offers online gift cards in exchange for pre-owned digital music players, cell phones, digital cameras and more.
Trade-ins, which can include tablet PCs, GPS systems, smartphones and MP3 players, must meet Amazon’s eligibility criteria. To recycle electronics, users simply search the online retailer’s electronics trade-in page to determine trade-in values, ranging from $7 for a Samsung Evergreen A667 cell phone to $480 for a white Apple iPad 2. Once the appropriate condition of an item (Like New, Good or Acceptable) has been indicated, a free, prepaid shipping label is issued, so you can ship off the gizmo at no charge.
Upon receipt, Amazon inspects all items. Item valuation is then approved, or scaled upwards or downwards depending on whether the gadget is in better or worse shape than indicated. A gift card credit is then applied to one’s account, typically within 48 hours. Should the device arrive in worse shape than specified, you can also opt to have it returned rather than accept less money for it. Rejected items are returned within 14 days at no cost.
Building upon existing buyback programs, which allow Amazon users to trade in DVD and Blu-ray movies, textbooks and video games, all types of media and devices can be sent back in the same box. Whether it’s enough to keep you in the black at the pace the high-tech industry evolves remains dubious, but when it comes to keeping up with the 21st century Joneses, hey – every little bit helps.