I’ve finished my video review of the DODOcase BOOKback skin for the iPad 2 and it’s now available on my YouTube channel:
I almost always sell my old gadgets to upgrade to new ones and going from the iPad 1 to the iPad 2 was no different. I usually sell my old gadgets online through eBay, Craigslist, or the forums at MacRumors and everythingiCafe. However, I saw that nearly all of these venues were flooded with first-generation iPads for sale as most people seemed to have the same idea as me to get funds to put toward the new iPad. So, I decided to try something different.
The one podcast I listen to regularly (aside from the everythingiCafe podcast I do with Chris every week, of course) is Leo Laporte’s MacBreak Weekly. Gazelle, an electronics recycling service, has been a sponsor of that podcast and since I generally trust that Leo would not lead his listeners to an organization that scams customers, I decided I would go through Gazelle to sell my iPad 1.
Gazelle either resells or recycles the gadgets they buy from customers. To get a feel for what Gazelle does with electronics that are still usable and in good condition, you can see their eBay store here.
The very first thing you need to do with Gazelle is submit information about the gadget you’d like them to buy from you. All I did was enter ‘iPad’ into the search bar on their site and I was given a list of models from which to choose. I chose the 64GB Wi-Fi + 3G model that I had and then I needed to answer a few questions about its accessories and overall condition. It was in flawless condition with no scratches or other marks thanks to a screen protector and the many cases I had for it. After submitting this information, Gazelle gives you a quote on how much they will pay for the item if you accept their offer and send it to them within 30 days (and they verify that the item’s condition matches what you described).
Now, I will admit I got a little lucky here. I did all of this right on the day after the iPad 2 went on sale and Gazelle offered me $530 plus a $26 bonus (from promo code ‘ipadtoday’ that I heard in one of Leo’s podcasts) for my iPad in flawless condition. Prices can change daily and Gazelle apparently got an influx of first-generation iPads soon after the release of the iPad 2 and the offer price for an iPad 1 in the same condition went down to around $300 on Monday. As I write this post, Gazelle is now offering $328 for the 64GB 3G + WiFi iPad 1. I’m not sure if the promo code I used still works but you’re welcome to try it if you’d like.
So, lesson number 1 with Gazelle: timing is key. If you’re looking to upgrade to a new version of a gadget, it’s best to do so before or right after the new version becomes available to ensure you get the best price, in general. If you wait until everyone and their mother is also selling theirs, the laws of demand and supply dictate that you probably won’t get as much money for it. Of course, this is only a general rule – if you’re selling something that’s very rare and expensive, timing may not be much of an issue for you.
To accept Gazelle’s offer, I had to create an account on their site, which was free, and provide my address and other information. This part was easy and all done on my new iPad 2. Gazelle also provided me with a prepaid shipping label, which I printed out later that day. I restored my iPad as a new device to remove all of my information from it, cleaned it thoroughly, and then packed it up carefully in its original box inside another larger box filled with packing peanuts. I dropped it off at a local FedEx office first thing on Monday, March 14.
A few days later, I checked my Gazelle account online to see if they’d received it. I saw that my iPad had indeed arrived and been checked in and was waiting to be inspected next. The next day, March 17, I received an email indicating that they’d inspected my iPad and that everything “checked out” and that they were giving me the full amount promised in their online quote. The email indicated I would receive payment within 3 to 5 days.
Gazelle offers multiple payment methods, including check, Walmart Pre-paid Visa, Amazon.com gift card, or PayPal. I had chosen PayPal during the registration process. On Saturday, March 19, I received an email letting me know that Gazelle had submitted payment to me via PayPal as promised.
And that was it! The entire transaction was completed in less than a week and I didn’t need to worry about a Nigerian scammer trying to buy my iPad through eBay or haggling with a stranger in a dark corner at a local coffee shop. Overall, I found my experience with Gazelle to be quick and painless and I’d definitely use them again.
Now, I have heard that others have not had good experiences with Gazelle. I don’t think any company is perfect and I’m sure Gazelle isn’t either. From what I’ve heard and seen online, they may not agree with the condition of the item once they receive it and inspect it themselves, or they may not return everything to you if you decline their offer in the end and they ship your item back to you. I can’t speak to how often this happens based on this one experience I’ve had with them, but I would encourage anyone to be honest when you submit information about your gadget. And, don’t send them anything extra that’s not an accessory that must be included with the gadget you want them to buy.
Have you used Gazelle or another gadget recycling service? If so, how did it work out for you?
As I mentioned just before I got my iPad, I was thinking that I wanted two cases for it – one to use around the house that added some grip and one for outside the house that provides screen protection plus a bit of camouflaging action. The DODOcase fit the bill for latter and the Cimo USA Silicone Skin case has been working pretty well for me for the former. My review of this Cimo case is now up and it includes a video overview of it as well – you can read it here.
Image courtesy of CimoUSA.com
If you follow me on Twitter, you probably saw that I talked about ordering a DODOcase case for my iPad on the day before the iPad was released. I love the look of Moleskine notebooks and wanted at least one case for my iPad that provided a bit of camouflage while using it in public. The DODOcase fit the bill and I placed my order right away. It arrived today (well within the 4-6 week delivery window) and I’m just starting to use it and wanted to post a quick video of it to start off. I will write a full review of it after I spend some time using it regularly.
- The case is well-made and doesn’t feel flimsy at all.
- It fits the iPad very well and the pictures and description of it at Dodocase.com are accurate.
- It makes my iPad look like a large Moleskine notebook from afar (or even up close if someone doesn’t look closely at the edges to see the cut-outs and the sides of the iPad), which is exactly what I was hoping for.
- My only durability concern revolves around the four foam pieces in each corner. These serve to hold the iPad in place and they could compress over time and fail to hold the iPad in securely enough. I won’t hazard a guess at how long they’ll hold up, but I’m not extremely worried about them now.