Samsung offering nearly £200 to switch to Galaxy S3 ahead of iPhone 5 arrival

Looking to upgrade to a shiny, new Samsung device and live in the US? The company's new upgrade programme might be the push you need to make the move.

Ahead of the iPhone 5's apparent arrival this autumn, the Korean tech giant announced via its Facebook page that users can now upgrade to a new Samsung smartphone like the Galaxy S3 and get up to $300 (about £190) for their old phone.

At present, the Samsung Upgrade offer is restricted to mobile enthusiasts who reside in America, but will it be rolled out to the UK in the future? With Apple's new flagship mobile heavily rumoured to arrive 21 September, it would make sense. Samsung will no doubt want to make a final push to get the S3 into as many hands as possible before the iPhone 5 becomes the new téléphone portable du jour, lest it lose too much of its dominant market share to its bitter rival.

Extending the exchange proposition - which operates much like other Internet trade-in programmes - to Europe and other markets is likely to be part of any such strategy. In other words, keep your eyes peeled for a similar deal to come to the UK in the coming weeks.

"Upgrading is simple. You'll get a quote, purchase a new Samsung smartphone, and mail in your old phone within 30 days," the company said. "Then you'll get a check mailed to you for your refund."

Samsung will provide pre-paid mailing labels. If your device is not worth anything, it will be recycled. Most devices received will be recycled, though salvageable parts or devices might be donated to organisations like homeless shelters, senior citizen care homes, and schools.

Those who have already purchased a new Samsung smartphone just need their proof of purchase to get an upgrade refund, the company said.

If you happen to be hanging on to a number of older phones, there's the option to upgrade multiple devices at once.

Samsung is working with Clover Wireless on the US trade-ins, which Samsung said has more than 20 years of experience in assessing the value of used electronics.

Trade-in values do change based on the market, Samsung said, but quotes received via Samsung Upgrade will be good for 30 days.

In terms of the upgrade, Samsung will ask you if you plan to use your device at work and then ask for the brand, model, and service provider for your current device. You will also need to tell Samsung if your current phone is fully functional, if there is liquid damage or corrosion, or a broken, damaged, or leaking screen.

Samsung is hoping you'll upgrade to its latest devices like the Galaxy S3 or Galaxy Note "phablet." The company is unveiling its next-gen Galaxy Note 2 later this month, however, so you might want to hold off until then if you're looking for a huge screen on your smartphone.