Old Cell Phones And Their Hidden Magic - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Old Cell Phones And Their Hidden Magic

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PHILADELPHIA -

"It's my lifeline! ... Everything is in there... It keeps my schedules together... quick contact... the weather... sports... Everything!"

Indeed, David Dixon's smartphone means the world to him!

"I've had my iPhone now for about seven years!" he told FOX 29.

And it's safe to say that the Operations Analyst has no plans of giving it up even after being contacted by his cell phone carrier to do so.

"I'd say a little before Thanksgiving, I received some advertisements in the mail to have me upgrade from the 4s to the latest "5" version," he recalled.

David says he also received several e-mails, encouraging him to "trade-in" his phone.

The reason is simple according to some experts.

They say that iPhones, especially some of the older models, are more popular than ever, and not just because of how they look, but rather what they can do, even stuff the iPhone was never intended to do.

"iPhone 4 and 4s...they still carry a lot of the old, iOS software.. which is basically the brains of the phone," he said, and possibly the reason, computer expert, Anthony Mongeluzo says.

Some manufacturers and cell phone carriers would like to get as many of them off the market, as soon as possible!

"The older iOS software can be hacked still. So when you hack your phones, you can do a lot more tricks with it that the phone was never intended to do," said Mongeluzo. "The flaws of the phone allow you to trick the carrier to do other things… to send text messages [and] can even make phone calls with a different phone number from a hacked phone."

These traits make the phone highly attractive to criminals and more valuable to those people who own one, according to Mongeluzo.

"...if I was Verizon, and I knew I could hack your phone, that could give you unlimited data, which costs them money, of course I'd want that back!"

This is the big reason Mongeluzo believes companies are willing to give their customers money to either trade-in or upgrade their phones early.

The carriers insist this not case.

When contacted about the technology experts' hacking claim, both Verizon and Apple declined comment.

However, it does make you wonder, considering cell carriers aren't the only ones asking to buy back the 4 and 4s iPhones.

"EBay is the hub for these phones. You can see unlocked phones go for upwards of $800.00 to a $1,000.00, depending on the quality of the phones and what's included," said Mongeluzo.

This fact makes them a hot commodity, even overseas. Some experts are actually comparing the device to gold.

"Someone in China might not be able to get their hands on that phone...." said Mongeluzo, giving the people who have it, a good reason to weigh their options.

"Knowing this information... I would probably take the EBay route, to get more bang for the buck!" said Mongeluzo.

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