It could start as soon as this month

Apple will reportedly launch a trade-in service this month for older versions of iPhones.

According to Bloomberg, Apple will partner with Brightstar Corp. (a provider of specialized global wireless distribution and services) to start an iPhone trade-in service at Apple retail stores as soon as this month. 

Brightstar, which also runs trade-in programs for AT&T and T-Mobile, will be expected to take care of Apple's iPhone trade-ins as well. 

The service will allow owners of iPhone 4s or iPhone 4Ss to trade in their old phones for money or an upgrade to the iPhone 5. 

The idea behind the service is to get customers to upgrade to Apple's newest devices. At AT&T, many customers get about $200 for trading in their old iPhones -- which could be put toward a new iPhone 5. 

Meanwhile, Brightstar resells the old iPhones to emerging markets where demand for cheaper devices is much higher. This allows newer devices, like the iPhone 5, to thrive in developed markets like the U.S. 

Rumors have been circulating for awhile that Apple is working on a cheaper version of the iPhone, but no further details about specs or a release date have been released.

In the meantime, trade-ins can serve as cheap resales for the company (however, it doesn't appear these old iPhones will be resold in the U.S., so residents will have to wait until the cheaper iPhone materializes). 

Source: Bloomberg

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