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iPhone 11 launch could knock the value of old handsets by 30%

The home screen of an Apple iPhone. Photo: Jaap Arriens/SIPA USA/PA Images

Apple’s announcement that it will hold it’s keynote event on 10 September where it is expected to unveil iPhone 11 is set to make older handsets cheaper by 30%, according to a study.

The latest Phone Depreciation Report by tech site MusicMagpie used trade-in data to track the value of the most popular handsets of top brands. It found handsets are becoming increasingly expensive, but are losing value much quicker.

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The iPhone XS which was released last year, and the X, Apple's 2017 flagship, both launched at the same price at £999. After six months on the market, the X had a trade-in price of £610 – a 39% depreciation rate – while the XS had a trade-in value of £404 – a 60% drop.

The iPhone XR, which was released in October 2018 for £749, is currently worth £421, dropping by 44% in the first year.

Samsung has also seen the prices of their Galaxy handsets increase, with the last three launches of the “Plus” range being priced at £799 (S8+), £869 (S9+) and £999 (S10+).

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However, like the more expensive iPhones, these Samsung handsets have not held on to their value. Data shows that after six months on sale, the S8+ had lost 47% of its value, while the S9+ and S10+ had lost 50% and 58%, respectively.

So why are newer devices losing more value than their predecessors? Jon Miller at MusicMagpie, said: “In the past, we’ve seen that devices with higher specs typically tend to hold their values well. However, in the recent set of releases, this hasn’t been the case.

“The reason for this is mainly a lack of innovation. Consumers can’t distinguish between the upgraded features, which leads to them choosing older version of the phone which does the same thing, but for a lot cheaper.”

Apple still on top

Apple continues to hold the top spot as the brand that retains the most value. On average, iPhones lose 44% value in the first 12 months, and 62% by the end of a standard 24-month contract.

Samsung shares the number two spot with Google this year, with Galaxy and Pixel handsets losing an average of 62% of their value after being on sale for 12 months.

After the second year, Google Pixels would have lost 75% of their value on average, while Samsung Galaxys would depreciate by 78%.

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While Huawei and OnePlus are still performing poorly than Apple, Google and Samsung, both brands have seen their results improve considerably from last year.

In 2018, Huawei handsets were reported as losing 84% value in the first 12 months. This year, it is 74% after 12 months.

OnePlus handsets lost on average 97% value in the first 12 months. Now, its 12-months depreciation figure is at 77%, reaching 89% by month 24.