Preview at WWDC likely in June, followed by September launch.
Apple Introduces New Apple Watch Recycling Program Offering Gift Cards Up To $175
Apple previously allowed customers to recycle the Apple Watch through its recycling program, but there were no gift cards offered. Gift cards received from recycling products can be put towards new devices purchased from the Apple Store, either at retail locations or online.
Gift cards are available for original Apple Watch models, Apple Watch Series 1 models, and Apple Watch Series 2 models, with Apple offering between $50 and $175 depending on device. For a 42mm stainless steel Apple Watch Series 2 in full working condition, for example, Apple is offering $175, which is the highest payout available.
For an original 42mm Apple Watch Sport model in good working condition, Apple is offering $50, the lowest payout. These prices are lower than what you might get attempting to sell a device on your own, but higher in some cases than the prices available through other trade-in programs.
Working condition means the device powers on, the enclosure is in good condition, there are no obvious signs of liquid damage, the display is in good condition, and the buttons are operational. Apple does allow for normal wear and tear when it comes to the display and the enclosure, however.
Apple is only offering money for Apple Watch devices that meet all of the above restrictions. For devices that are damaged in some way, Apple offers free recycling through Brightstar, but no gift card.
When recycling an Apple Watch through Brightstar, the company will allow you to use your own shipping or it will send a free shipping box. Customers must make sure the Apple Watch is free of all faults, all data has been wiped, and that the battery is fully charged. It does not appear that charging cables nor Apple Watch bands need to be sent with the Apple Watch.
Apple, in partnership with Brightstar, also offers gift cards when recycling a range of older iPhones, iPads, Macs, PCs, and smartphones from third-party manufacturers.