Want to buy a no-contract used Iphone 4. Really surprised that the prices haven't come down from even 60 days ago on places like Cowboom. No real hurry, but I figured with the 5 out now that prices on the 4 would drop a lot from the $270 or so of August.
And speculation on when that will happen?
Simply don't trust Craigslist at this price point for tech.
The iphone 4s wasn't really obsoleted by the iphone 5. Yes it has a faster processor and larger screen, but just like the ipad 3 is technically better than the ipad 2, the ipad 2 is good enough that for the most part you don't really notice a huge jump by upgrading. Because of this, not everyone is upgrading, and because of that, prices aren't dropping. Considering that the no-contract price of the iphone 4s today is still $550, and that there's solid demand for it, you aren't going to see large decreases in price. Maybe in a year or so, when iphone 5's start regularly hitting the used market, you may see some pressure, but that means that you're essentially trading one year of ownership for $50-80 dollars, which to me doesn't seem worth it.
Check the used market and with that I don't mean eBay but rather forums. I managed to get a 4S for $290 but YMMV the current market price of the 4S is 300-350 while the 4 can be had for even $200 but it stays in the $200-250 range. I can pm you a list of forums to check but I hope you are okay with paying through PayPal or Amazon payments with feedback on your side.
Honestly, Craigslist isn't the pirateland Somalia that you seem to have made it out to be in your mind. It's just a big online swapmeet, where you don't have to deal with ridiculous transaction costs like on ebay. I buy and sell tons of stuff there. For example, when my girlfriend wanted a new Macbook for her graduate program, we took advantage of the free ipod + free printer deal at the Apple store. I immediately turned around and sold them unopened on Craigslist to recoup some of the costs, giving her a Macbook pro for less than $900. When I decided to shake up my camera collection, I sold my awesome condition DSLRs on Craigslist, and then bought a better one, plus a plethora of lenses, all functioning perfectly. My mom bought her ipad from someone that needed money and wasn't using it as much as she thought, also works perfectly. A good friend that autocrosses cars bought a BMW, exactly in the condition stated. Back when I was in college, my bought-as-new Yamaha R6 was just sitting at my father's house all semester, so I sold it on ebay, perfect condition. Same story with my brother's LS1 Camaro, great condition, well modified, no issues. You being afraid of dealing with ebay or Craigslist is like someone 20 years ago being afraid of dealing with email. You can either deal with an individual and save money, or go straight to Apple and not save money, it's that simple.
Heck, when the iphone 5 comes, we are going to sell my girlfriend's iphone 4 on Craigslist and have her upgrade, which incidentally has been in an Otterbox Commuter all of its life with a screen protector, never been dropped in water. If I were to go to a "reliable store / website that sells used iPhones" to sell it instead of selling it on Craigslist to an individual, I would get less money for that sale. Plus, on the buyer side, he or she would then have to pay more money for it. Why not cut out the middle man and just do a face-to-face? It's easier, and both parties come out ahead! I'll put it up for the going rate of an iphone 4, plus a few extra bucks for the $30 case. I will meet the buyer, as I always have, either at a coffee shop or other public place (or, if they want, at the local AT&T store, so that they can immediately verify that the phone is legit, which is what I did with my Android phone). Heck, if you WERE to go to "a reliable store / website that sells used iPhones," as I mention you're just going to end up buying someone's iphone anyway.
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