Gadget hoarding is a real problem—ask my wife what she thinks of my home office. We had to buy an obnoxiously large bookcase from Ikea and the thing still only holds half the whatsits I’ve accrued over several years of gadget hoarding—a practice I used to refer to as “collecting.”
Like most people, I’m inherently too lazy and/or busy to list things on eBay or Amazon so I’ve instead found myself using trade-in services like Gazelle and BuyMyTronics from time to time just to clear out space for more crap additional products from the wonderful world of technology.
A new-ish site called EcoSquid aggregates offers from several trade-in sites so you can get a better idea of where you’ll get the best deals for your stuff. The site currently provides links to places where you can resell or recycle cell phones and MP3 players, and plans to offer additional product categories in the future. On top of that, it provides links to places where you can recycle things like cables, ink cartridges, monitors and laptops too.
I spoke with company CEO Nik Raman at CES and he told me that Ecosquid has a pretty stringent approval process when it comes to which trade-in companies are listed on the site. So while you won’t get trade-in deals from every trade-in site in the universe, you’ll at least know that you’re dealing with reputable places with acceptable Better Business Bureau ratings.
I looked up what I’d be able to get for my “light wear” 16GB iPhone 3GS and got info for six different trade-in sites with offers between $144 and $176.
For comparison, a well-crafted eBay auction for the same device could fetch bids of over $300. Most of these trade-in sites involve the instant gratification of printing out a pre-paid shipping label, dropping the phone in a box, and sending it off, though, so there’s definitely a big convenience factor involved. And you don’t have to deal with any pre- and post-sale questions or complaints from would-be auction site users.
All in all, Ecosquid has a nice, easy to use site if you’re looking to get rid of some of your old gadgets. It’ll be nice once the company adds more product categories but the database of cell phones, MP3 players, and reputable trade-in sites is already off to a good start.
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