Report: Android phones lose twice as much value as iPhones in first year

General

When we buy a phone, most of us hope that it’ll last for a couple of years. We also hope that it’ll still have some decent buyback value at the end of its life. However, the buyback value depends a lot on the brand and model of the device you own.

According to a report from BankMyCell, a site that tracks trade-in prices for phones, Android flagships lose twice as much value (-33.62%) in the first year compared to an iPhone (-16.70%). After two years, an Android phone’s price drops by 61.50% as compared to 35.70% of an iPhone. Notably, this data doesn’t take limited-time brand or carrier offers into account.

Credit: BankMyCell
Average trade-in price of phones after a year by operating systems.

The report also compares the value depreciation of two of the most popular flagship phones of 2019: the Galaxy S20 vs the iPhone 11. Here’s how their value has dropped after nine months:

  • The Galaxy S20 (-34.78%) v the iPhone 11 (-12.84%)
  • The Galaxy S20+ (-30.59%) v the iPhone 11 Pro (-21.31%)
  • The Galaxy S20 Ultra (-36.30%) v the iPhone 11 Pro Max(-15.96%)

BankMyCell has made some other intriguing observations in the report. It notes that phones from Google’s Pixel series lose -38.46% value in a year — the Pixel 4 tops the overall chart with -40.56% (-$160) value depreciation. Sony, Motorola, and HTC were the worst performers. Their phones lose 39.51%, 42.57%, and 53.08% worth in a 12-month period respectively.

There are multiple factors in a phone’s price depreciation such as availability of software updates, longevity, and performance of hardware. Apple’s iPhones are touted to have quality hardware that continue to receive software updates for years. In comparison, despite receiving quick software updates, Google’s Pixel phones often face serious hardware problems, and that’s reflected in the report.

You can check out your phone’s value depreciation here.

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Published January 21, 2021 — 09:38 UTC

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