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Unveil the old cell phones that can earn you the most money

Do you store any old cell phones at home? It turns out that you are sitting on a gold mine.

This week, the bidder paid US$39,000 (£34,700) for an unopened first-generation iPhone – more than 50 times its original price.

Unfortunately, you’re unlikely to get that much for your older hardware, but research by Protect Your Bubble suggests you can still make a decent profit.

According to the website, the original iPhone model sells for an average of £542.55 on eBay, while the Motorola DynaTAC 8000X has an average price of £1,776.01.

Here’s a look at the vintage phones that can earn you the most money.

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Do you store any old cell phones at home? It turns out that you are sitting on a gold mine

The Motorola DynaTAC 8000X (pictured) was the world's first mobile phone, weighing 784 grams (1.75 lb), and was valued at £3,000 in the UK in 1985. Now, it's the highest-grossing phone online, selling for an average price of 1 776.01 pounds sterling

The Motorola DynaTAC 8000X (pictured) was the world’s first mobile phone, weighing 784 grams (1.75 lb), and was valued at £3,000 in the UK in 1985. Now, it’s the highest-grossing phone online, selling for an average price of 1 776.01 pounds sterling

The second biggest earner is the HTC Touch Diamond2 (pictured), bringing in £542.90 from just one sale this year.  It was released in 2009, a year after the launch of the second generation iPhone 3G, and was described as

The second biggest earner is the HTC Touch Diamond2 (pictured), bringing in £542.90 from just one sale this year. Released in 2009, a year after the launch of the second generation iPhone 3G, it was billed as Windows’ “personal digital assistant.”

The third is the original iPhone model (pictured), informally referred to as

It is followed by the second generation iPhone, the iPhone 3G (pictured), which averages £301.68

The third is the original iPhone model (left), informally referred to as ‘iPhone 1’ or ‘iPhone 2G’, which retails for an average price of £542.55. It is followed by the second generation iPhone, the iPhone 3G (right), which averages £301.68

Top 20 Earning Retro Phones on EBAY

  1. Motorola DynaTAC 8000X – £1,776.01
  2. HTC Touch Diamond2 – £542.90
  3. iPhone – £542.55
  4. iPhone 3G – £ 301.68
  5. Motorola RAZR2 – £239.25
  6. Motorola Microtac 9800X – £ 230.36
  7. Motorola International 3200 – £215.50
  8. Nokia 7280 – £ 180.44
  9. Nokia N79 – £171.62
  10. Ericsson T39 – £146.85
  11. Nokia E90 Communicator – £134.25
  12. Nokia N-Gage – £112.90
  13. Nokia 9000 Communicator – £112.52
  14. HTC Universal – £104.25
  15. Nokia 9110I – £ 100.75
  16. Motorola RAZR2 V9 – £93.44
  17. Nokia 7600 – £ 86.69
  18. Nokia 2100 – £66.74
  19. Sidekick LX 2009 – £57.09
  20. Nokia 8110 – £ 56.70

Research has revealed that households in the UK stock an estimated 527 million unwanted electrical items.

That’s the equivalent of 20 discarded devices in a home, with cell phones being the most hoarding piece of technology.

According to Ofcom, 45 per cent of households in the UK have two mobile phones, while research from giffgaff revealed that nearly 30 million people are clinging to an old phone.

Experts from Protect Your Bubble discover which brands and models will bring the most resale value on eBay.

While the retro DynaTAC is the most valuable, it doesn’t have a huge market, with only 12 sold last year.

Next up, the HTC Touch Diamond2 is the second most profitable phone, making £542.90 from just one sale this year.

This was released in 2009, a year after the launch of the second generation iPhone 3G, and was billed as a Windows “personal digital assistant”.

It was the first device to feature the 3D TouchFLO interface, which gave it an easy-to-use set of icons, making it a reliable alternative to Apple phones.

The HTC Touch Diamond2 is worth £528.94 more than its predecessor, the HTC Touch Diamond, which retailed for just £13.42.

The third is the original iPhone model, informally referred to as ‘iPhone 1’ or ‘iPhone 2G’, which retails for an average price of £542.55.

The first iPhone was introduced by Apple CEO Steve Jobs in January 2007 at MacWorld San Francisco, with the slogan “Apple reinvents the phone”.

That June, the 8GB version went public at $599 – or £269 at the time – and became Apple’s most successful product.

The touch screen and app layout changed the smartphone industry forever, and was named Time magazine’s Invention of the Year in 2007.

Last year, sellers made £33,100 in total from sales of 61 machines.

Rounding out the top six are the iPhone 3G, Motorola RAZR2 and Motorola Microtac 9800X, which sell for an average of £308.68, £239.25 and £239.36 respectively.

The Nokia 7280 is the eighth most expensive vintage phone sold on eBay, with an average price of £180.44.  It was known as Tel

The Nokia 7280 is the eighth most expensive vintage phone sold on eBay, with an average price of £180.44. It was known as the “lipstick” phone and had a rotary dial instead of a keypad

The device with the highest sales figure between May 2021 and May 2022 was the Nokia 6630 (pictured), with 1,614 units sold.

The Nokia 6310i (pictured) from 2002 is the highest-grossing old phone, with sales of £68,517 in just 12 months

The device with the highest sales figure between May 2021 and May 2022 was the Nokia 6630 (left), with 1,614 units sold. The Nokia 6310i (right) from 2002 is the highest-grossing old phone, with sales of £68,517 in just 12 months

However, while these devices individually bring in the most money, they are not necessarily the most sought after.

The device with the most sales between May 2021 and May 2022 was the Nokia 6630, with 1,614 units sold.

The Nokia 6630 is said to be the first tri-band, dual-modem phone designed to work on 3G, EDGE, and 2G networks, and was released in 2004.

It’s a cheap device, with an average selling price of £4.23, but still managed to fetch a total of £6,827 over a 12-month period.

In second place was the Nokia 6310i with 1,444 sales, and in third place was the BlackBerry Bold, with 1,417 sales.

With 17 of the top 20 most wanted handsets being Nokias, their classic keyboard is clearly a magnet for vintage phone collectors.

This trend is being maintained for the top 20 most profitable phones, of which 15 were also Nokia phones.

The third-highest earning and third-highest-ordered old phone was the BlackBerry Bold (pictured).  This year, in January, the legacy BlackBerry software is being retired, which could lead to more nostalgic purchases.

The third-highest earning and third-highest-ordered old phone was the BlackBerry Bold (pictured). This year, in January, the legacy BlackBerry software is being retired, which could lead to more nostalgic purchases.

Top 20 best selling phones and top grossers on EBAY

Best selling old phones

  1. Nokia 6630 – 1,614
  2. Nokia 6310I – 1444
  3. BlackBerry Bold – 1417
  4. Nokia 8210 – 1,106
  5. Nokia 6100-994
  6. Nokia N95 – 950
  7. Nokia 6680 – 882
  8. Nokia 8110-612
  9. Nokia 2100-596
  10. Nokia E71 – 358
  11. Nokia 7610 – 278
  12. Blackberry Pearl – 252
  13. Nokia 3310 -237
  14. Nokia 6600-229
  15. Nokia 3220 – 215
  16. Nokia 5800 Xpress Music – 192
  17. Nokia 7110-175
  18. Nokia N97 – 140
  19. Nokia N-Gage-135
  20. Motorola Startake – 116

Highest grossing retro phones

  1. Nokia 6610i – £ 68,517
  2. Nokia 2100 – 39,777 pounds sterling
  3. BlackBerry Bold – 37,903 pounds sterling
  4. Nokia N95 – £36,834
  5. Nokia 8110 – £ 33,470
  6. iPhone – £ 33,095
  7. Nokia 8210 £25,305
  8. Motorola DynaTAC 8000X – £21,312
  9. Nokia N-Gage – £15,241
  10. Motorola RAZR2 – £15,073
  11. Nokia E90 Communicator – £8,995
  12. Nokia E71 – £7,944
  13. Nokia 7110 – £ 7,859
  14. Nokia 6600 – £ 7,484
  15. Nokia 6100 – £ 7,316
  16. Nokia 6630 – £6,827
  17. Nokia 3220 – £ 5,788
  18. BlackBerry Pearl – £5,620
  19. Nokia N97 – £5,390
  20. Nokia 7600 – £ 4,953

Data collected from eBay between May 2021 and May 2022

As well as being the second most requested device, the Nokia 6310i from 2002 is also the highest earner, generating £68,517 in sales in just 12 months.

The second most profitable phone is the Nokia 2100, which generated £39,777 between May 2021 and May 2022, and the third is the BlackBerry Bold at £37,903.

This year, in January, the aging BlackBerry software was retired, perhaps spurring more nostalgic purchases.

James Brown, director of Protect Your Bubble, said: ‘After 40 years of mobile phones, it’s interesting to see what old phones Brits are willing to pay good money for.

If you have any old phones, while the cost of living in the UK continues to rise – now might be the time to ditch the nostalgia and start selling.

But remember, the better the condition, the more profit. Take good care of it with a protective case or cover, clean it regularly and keep the software up to date.

Homes in the UK store 527 million unwanted electrical items containing the world’s rarest materials

New research has revealed that households in the UK stock an estimated 527 million unwanted electrical items.

That’s the equivalent of 20 discarded devices in a home, with cell phones being the most hoarding piece of technology.

However, according to Currys, this electronic waste contains a treasure trove of precious metals, including 95 million tons of gold, silver and palladium.

More of these minerals can now be found in junk tools than the natural ores found in the earth.

Read more here