Benefits of Annual iPhone Upgrades

Shawn Blanc ran some numbers and found the pros and cons of purchasing iPhones through Apple’s Upgrade program. Because the offer is Apple’s, you might assume that it’s going to cost you a little extra for very little additional benefit besides added convenience.

But be specific about it, Shawn calculates that you’re saving about $60 if you purchase your own phone, keep it in pristine condition, and sell it annually on Craigslist or Ebay as you make the jump. And this is in the most ideal scenario. What if you have difficulty selling the phone for the right price at the right time? Then this method will bite you.

If you use Apple’s offer, it will cost the additional $60 or so, but then you don’t have to worry about keeping the device in pristine condition and the Upgrade program comes with Apple Care. And you won’t fiddle with selling the phone, which is a huge plus. Shawn:

From where I’m sitting, if you like to upgrade every year, if you’re not ultra-thrifty, if you don’t care about keeping your old hardware, and if you like to pay for convenience, then Apple’s Upgrade program actually sounds like a pretty sweet deal.

I don’t want to upgrade every year, but I see the appeal. I’m looking forward to the iPhone 7. I have a good feeling about it, and right now I’m not interested in the hassle that comes with swapping my 6 Plus for a 6S Plus. I am with T-Mobile and use what they call the JUMP program for a warranty and upgrades. When I upgrade, the simplest thing to do is to stay with T-Mobile. But there is a lot of appeal to switch to Apple’s offer this time next year.