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macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001

Apple today updated its Mac recycling program to partner with a new company, replacing longtime partner PowerOn with Phobio, a company that promises a seamless device buyback program. Apple's recycling program is designed to offer Apple users cash for their old devices by providing simple trade-in options.

Starting today, when you use Apple's Renew and Recycling program to recycle a Mac desktop or notebook, Apple will now direct you to Phobio's site where you can find your Mac by entering a serial number. After answering a couple of questions about condition, Phobio offers up a price estimate and lets users choose an Apple Store Gift Card, Paypal, or Virtual Visa Reward as a payment option.


According to a source that spoke to MacRumors about the partnership change, Apple opted to go with Phobio because the site offers higher trade-in values, is easier to navigate, and provides an option for cash payments alongside Apple Store Gift Cards, something that wasn't available via PowerOn.

Based on our testing, Phobio and PowerOn offer similar trade-in values for many machines, with PowerOn offering a slight edge in value for newer Macs, while Phobio seems to have slightly better pricing for some older models.

Apple is only partnering with Phobio for Mac trade-ins at the current time. For PC trade-ins, Apple continues to work with PowerOn, and for iPad and iPhone trade-ins, Apple is still using longtime partner Brightstar.

Article Link: Apple Adds Phobio as New Mac Trade-In Partner


macrumors demi-god
Aug 28, 2015
Just sold my broken 2011 MBP to Gazelle for $150. Pretty good considering it's basically good for parts at this point.

Apple was willing to give me $0 for it.

I think we know who I went with.


macrumors 604
Feb 4, 2004
Florida Resident
I'll pay the full original retail price for a working Apple I PC board and recycle it for you. Great deal! You got to use your brand new Apple I from Steve Jobs and Woz for over 40 years for free.


Jun 3, 2015
I never liked the trade in program.
"I'm gonna buy the new imac pro...wait a minute. Why is my special inital on that screen? Didnt i trade in my imac 2011 with my inital on it?"

Internet Enzyme

macrumors 6502a
Feb 21, 2016
Why wouldn't you just sell your computer on Amazon? That site offered me $500. On Amazon I could sell it for $800.


macrumors 65816
Mar 3, 2004
Canada's South Coast
God these companies have stupid names. "Phobio" sounds like a horror movie title, and what's this Health Gorilla announcement that also came out today? What do Gorillas have to do with your health, and why would I trust a bunch of Gorillas with my private health records? Would you want your baby delivered at the Gorilla Hospital? These are the kinds of companies that should die a quick natural death and fade into oblivion because they're just dumb ideas from the start. It's bizarre that Apple is now legitimizing them.

Afterthought: I guess Apple is a pretty stupid name for a computer company too LOL!
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macrumors member
Feb 19, 2008
I've used PowerOn and I agree that they pay low. They ask about model CPU speed and that's about it: no extra money if, say, your 13" MacBook Air 1.7GHz is Early-2015 instead of Early-2014, if your SSD is 512GB instead of 256GB.

I haven't used this new company, but I have used Mac of all Trades, which paid much higher.

Keep in mind I'm a business customer and sell them used laptops from my company by the dozen, so YMMV with one-offs.
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Mark Booth

macrumors 68000
Jan 16, 2008
I just input the serial numbers for a cheese grater Mac Pro. It said the serial number was not found. Then I tried the serial number for a 24" Cinema Display. Again, serial number not found.

Not impressed.



macrumors 68040
Jun 28, 2009
Encinitas, CA
$2.00 for a mint iPhone 3GS. (And it's the scarcer 32GB white one too. . .)
I'm bummed. I remember waiting hours in line to get that iPhone on release day.


macrumors member
Jan 23, 2010
Just for fun, I price shopped my late 2016 MacBook Pro 1TB 2.9 GHz Intel Core i7 and was quoted $1205 from Phobio vs. Gazelle who would give me $1629. I asked one of their agents what benefit would it be to me go through them and their response was:

"Currently our values for trade ins are set with Apple. There are many competitors in the market and Gazelle has great pricing for used devices. Our lab tests all machines and will adjust quotes according to the condition of the machine and its specifications. Our payout options for trade in are with Visa, PayPal and an Apple Store gift card. I would say the major benefit to you would be the convenience of our shipping methods and the quick turnaround time to get your money for your device."

So, moral of the story kids - don't use Phobio. It's just another way for Apple to stick it to us. Use Gazelle or Amazon.
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macrumors member
Apr 14, 2010
$15 for a 2009 imac with all options marked 'yes'. I could get more on ebay just for the keyboard.
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