Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) will now buy iPhones and offer customers a $200 credit in return. This offer is good on used iPhone 4S and iPhone 5 devices. This special offer is exclusive to Microsoft stores and will run until November 3rd. It’s also a clever way to get customers to purchase a new Windows phone. Although the credit comes in form of a card and customers can use it on anything they want in the store, it’s evident that Microsoft is encouraging customers to purchase their phones.

Microsoft iphone tradein

Microsoft’s buy-up program for iPhone

A few days ago, Forbes predicted Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) would offer a buy-up program for iPhones much like they launched for the iPad weeks ago. They explained, “According to an inside source at Microsoft, Microsoft Stores will begin giving a minimum $200 in-store credit (as a Windows Store gift card) for iPhones on Friday as part of its “#timetoswitch” campaign, obviously hoping consumers will use the cash to buy a Windows Phone. For the past few weeks, Microsoft has been running a similar trade-in campaign enabling consumers to “trade-in” iPads for cash to encourage consumers to buy Microsoft’s Surface tablets. The company also launched an online campaign in the past few weeks enabling consumers to trade in any Apple, Android or Blackberry Device for a Visa gift card. Unlike the current iPad campaign and the iPhone campaign, which are limited to stores in the U.S. and Canada (meaning you must make the trade at a Microsoft store), the online campaign is open to “anyone that’s ready to trade up to an amazing new Microsoft device.”

Apple increasing competition for tech companies

Now that Apple Inc. (NASDA:AAPL) released the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C, the competition between the tech giants has intensified a little bit more. Although Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) has yet to sell as many phones as Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) or even Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (LON:BC94) (KRX:005930), they aren’t performing too shabby in terms of sales. This move could create more interest in Lumia smartphones. The iPad offer is also still running. Customers can trade old iPad tablets and get a $200 credit until October 27th.