Best Buy is introducing a “Buy Back” program, so aptly named because the retailer will buy your gadgets back if and when you want to upgrade to something newer. Did you buy a hot new Android device three months ago only to feel a bit let down when a new one was announce just three weeks ago? Many of us knows how that feels, and Best Buy has our back.
But from what we can gather, cell phone purchasers can opt into the cleverly named Buy Back program for $59.99 at the time of handset purchase. Between months 1 and 6 of handset ownership, users can then trade-in their device to Best Buy Mobile for 50% of the phones full retail value. Between months 6 and 12 the device can be turned in for 40% of its original value; months 12 to 18, 40%; and months 19 to 25, 20%.
If you’re obsessively upgrading your phone every few months – or any other gadget, according to the anonymous source for this plan leak – this will undoubtedly save you a good chunk of cash. However, it’s also Best Buy’s gain to offer this incentive when you consider the costs. Not only will you be selling your device back for 50% or less after a month of purchase, but to opt into the program you’ll have to pay an initial fee of $59.99.
Let’s say you buy a device for $200, valued at $600 without a contract, and you pay the Buy Back fee – you’re walking out with your new handset for $260. Now say you come back three months later and you want a brand-spanking new device. Best Buy will take your phone back at 50% of its valued price – $300 – so you’ll have $300 to spend on a new device. At this point, you’re not eligible for an upgrade unless you open a new line, so you’re applying that to a whopping $500-600 new smartphone. Factor in your carrier plan costs over that course of time and the initial fee and you would have spent nearly a grand in just three months to satiate your gadget desire.
Details are scant, but from what I can gather, along with BGR’s report, it seems that that’s how it’s going to work out. At least it saves you the time and hassle of selling your new-ish toy on eBay or Craigslist.