May 12, 2014
Apple (AAPL) is pushing its iPhone 5s and 5c in a big in-store trade in program at its U.S. retail outlets to try to get customers to upgrade from their old phones to the newer models. Is Apple already making room for the iPhone 6?
9to5Mac last week reported the initiative, which kicked off on May 8, describing it as a sales-boosting campaign held in a number of states across the United States, likely to be overseen by new retail chief Angela Ahrendts along with other Apple retail top brass. The vendor also is said to be prepping future iPhone promotions to increase smartphone sales at its retail stores, according to the report.
Apple reportedly is emailing users of older iPhones who are eligible for an upgrade an invitation to purchase an iPhone 5s or 5c through trade in at one of its stores. Employees have been instructed to check customers’ upgrade eligibility and tell them about their options
In the email, Apple tells users “It’s a beautiful time for an upgrade. You may be eligible for upgrade pricing on a new iPhone. And if you bring in your old iPhone to be recycled, you could get credit toward a new one. Ask us for details.”
The new program appears to dovetail with a trade in program Apple first launched nearly a year ago that allows users to bring in their old phones to stores and purchase a newer unit for a discounted price. 9to5Mac said Apple recently increased the amount of money it’s offering users to buy back their old phones to $99 for an iPhone 4 and $199 for an iPhone 4s. Users eligible for the full iPhone 4 credit essentially can upgrade to an iPhone 5 at no cost.
This latest iPhone sales boost is tied to a strategy overhaul chief executive Tim Cook signed off on last year to bring sales numbers for the iPhone at Apple’s retail stores more in line with service figures for the device at the outlets—about half of serviced iPhones are fixed or replaced at the vendor’s retail locations.
Apple operates 416 retail stores worldwide, about 40 percent of which are located outside the U.S. The vendor’s store plans for fiscal 2014 include opening 30 new outlets worldwide and remodeling about 20 stores.
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