Wednesday, May 18, 2016

planning to launch iPhone trade-in program as soon as next month

is beginning final preparations to launch an iPhone trade-in program in its retail stores as soon as next month, according to sources with knowledge of the initiative. This trade-in program will allow customers that own rlier versions of the iPhone, such as the iPhone 4S, to bring the phone into an Store and exchange it for a new iPhone model, like the iPhone 5, at a discounted price…On the allure of a trade-in program, CEO Tim Cook said during the last rnings call that he is “not opposed” to such a strategy. “I see channels doing it, and I like the environmental aspect of it, and so that part of it rlly is encouraging to me,” said.Third-party iPhone sales channels like Best Buy, Verizon Wireless, and AT&T have been pushing their own trade-in programs for several months.Aswe reported rlier this yr, the iPhone trade-in program is designed as a critical component of Cook’s blueprint to bolstering iPhone sales in his chain of stores. Cook explained to Retail ldership that he does not feel iPhone sales are hlthy enough at ’s stores. 80% of i are not sold directly from Retail, Cook told these employees.With the new ability to exchange an iPhone and receive a fresh new model at a discounted price, perhaps the iPhone trade-in program will help meet Cook’s goal of selling more i direct from his stores.A critical aspect of this is actually driving traffic to Stores so that new iPhone customers are exposed to the entire ecosystem. When a customer visits an Store to purchase their new iPhone, they will be immediately made aware of other devices like iPads and Macs.In order for the program to launch and exist smlessly, will begin training the majority of its retail employees on the program throughout this week. Employees are said to be required to fulfill at lst two hours of training. This training must be complete by the end of the first week of September.While formal training will begin this week, has been conducting limited pilot testing for the program in recent months. According to one person with knowledge of the piloting, a couple of Stores in Texas have internally tested procedures for the trade-in program. In addition to this week’s training, deliveries of empty shipping boxes have arrived at Stores. These boxes will be used for Stores to ship traded-in handsets. It is plausible that these devices will be refurbished or re-sold in emerging markets.A concrete launch date for the program is yet to be confirmed, but sources have made it clr that the formal launch is currently due during the month of September. It is currently unclr if plans to start the trade-ins before or after the upcoming launch of the“iPhone 5S”andlower-cost “iPhone 5C.”With rumors of new i gaining mainstrm attention in recent months, perhaps it would behoove to wait until after the new device launches to provide the trade-in program. This could spur even more upgrades to the new products. On the other hand, beginning the trade-in program before the new i launch could boost iPhone 5 sales, a device that will likely want to clr inventory of if it will, in fact, be discontinued come the end of September. is said to have originally planned to launch the iPhone trade-in program during the last week of July, but the program’s launch was pushed back for unspecified rsons. Besides being designed to incrse iPhone sales, is said to believe that the trade-in program will incentivize customers with damaged i to seek a trade-in for a newer device, rather than clogging up the ius Bar to receive a refurbished replacement phone. This, in turn, could allow the ius Bar to provide a deeper focus on issues that could not be as sily resolved as a replacble iPhone.Tim Cook’s iPhone sales changes have also introduced programs such as an Store app with free iTunes content,improved Care support, and anenhanced Back to School App Store Gift Card offering. Sources say that at the yr progresses, even more iPhone sales pushes will be introduced to Retail.

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