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Upgraders jumpstart Apple's 'iPad Christmas' with 175% surge in trade-ins of old iPads for cash

iPad trade-ins through Gazelle grew a whopping 175 percent over Black Friday weekend as presumed upgraders sought cash for their older models, supporting Apple's belief that the iPad will be the hottest holiday gift this year.

Retina iPad mini review

The trade-in service industry leader — and AppleInsider partner — Gazelle shared new data on iPad trade-ins Friday, revealing that the period between Black Friday and Cyber Monday saw a massive increase over the same period last year, up 175 percent. That exceeded the increase in overall traffic, which was up 74 percent year over year for the same period.

The increase in trade-ins suggests that customers are selling their old iPads for cash to services like Gazelle as they upgrade to Apple's latest models. Both the thinner and lighter full-size iPad Air and the new iPad mini with Retina display were launched in November.

Apple has high hopes for its new tablet duo, with CEO Tim Cook referring in October to this holiday season as an "iPad Christmas." Cook's confidence suggests the company believes this could be a record setting quarter for iPad sales — a presumption supported by the new record trade-in figures.

Separately, in an interview on CNBC, Gazelle Chief Executive Israel Ganot said Friday that his company has seen a relatively even mix of trade-ins of third- and fourth-generation full-size iPads, as well as the first-generation iPad mini.

Though iPad trade-ins grew significantly, the most popular item traded in at Gazelle last weekend was actually Apple's iPhone. Customers seeking cash for their Samsung phones also turned out in droves, with a 177 percent year over year increase.

Readers interested in trading in their old iPhone, iPad or Mac for cash or gift cards can compare offerings from Gazelle and other partners in AppleInsider's Trade-In Guide. The company has also been running a promotion, which ends this evening, that tacks on an additional $10 to each cash payout. The promotion is automatically activated when using the Trade-In Guide, the iPad portion of which is included below:

Current iPad cash payouts