I Sold My iPhone To Microsoft

Some things bewilder me.

Microsoft is now offering an iPhone buyback program (I’m not actually sure what to call this, considering how unique this is)  for a minimum of $200. That’s way more credit than Apple’s own program. The issue for Microsoft is of course that it’s Microsoft Store credit, which can be used for anything, not just surfaces and Windows Phones as some moronic Microsoft marketer expected. I for one will be taking advantage of their stupidity. I will be using this offer , and here’s why:

Microsoft doesn’t understand logic, and I intend to take advantage of it.

  • Microsoft clearly intends customers to buy one of its fledgling Windows Phone 8 Devices, but they’re offering Microsoft Store credit, unrestricted, and above face value. You could even buy used phones on ebay, bring it in to Microsoft stores near you, and rack up giftcards, making $20-40 a phone.

Microsoft execs were probably expecting users to trade in for surfaces, and other Microsoft devices, but odds are, they’ll buy something more trivial, and with lower margins, like:

  • Fit Bits, and Jawbones.
  • Klipsch and Beats headphones
  • Makerbot Printers
  • And lots of other products that don’t require Windows computers to run

This program is a loss-leader, but it’s a failed loss-leader.

Apple was smart (or at least logical) in that their buyback are only valid towards new iPhones. They’ll make the money back easily on every activation, and if somebody doesn’t use the credit, they don’t lose a cent (they even make money off the resale).

Microsoft’s credit is valid towards ANYTHING. I’m going to trade in my iPhone there, pick up my new iPhone 5S, and buy new headphones, and maybe a new computer case. With the phone buyback, and the low margin items, Microsoft will lose money, as usual, and they’ll learn nothing, but at least I’ll get some nice headphones at a low price.

Microsoft needs to get their stuff together.

Michael Sitver

Michael Sitver is a technology insider who has been blogging about technology since 2011. Along the way, he's interviewed founders of innovative startups, and executives from fortune 500 companies, and he's tried dozens or hundreds of gadgets. Michael has also contributed to works featured in Newsday, The San Francisco Chronicle, and the associated press. Michael also occasionally consults, and writes for Seeking Alpha and Yahoo News.

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