Smartphones are an excellent tool. It’s like having a computer right in your pocket – you can check the news, weather, take pictures and scroll social media whenever you want. With all of the advancements in technology, there is almost nothing that a smartphone can’t do. However, with advancements happening at such a rapid rate this often means upgrading more often and finding yourself with an excessive pile of old smartphones that nobody quite knows what to do with.
Rather than sending them to the landfill or leaving them to take up space in the junk drawer yet more dust, here are a few things you can do with an old phone with just a simple WiFi connection
Gaming device – There are a ton of games and apps that only require access to WiFi to download. By using your old phone for playing you don’t have to worry about using up all of the storage on your main device.
Bedside – keep it beside your bed and make use of apps to help you fall asleep, or just as a reliable alarm clock.
Music player – at one time we had different devices for everything – an iPod or mp4 player in one hand, a camera around our neck and a phone in our pocket. Although there are a lot of benefits to an all-in-one device if anything happens to it … big trouble! By repurposing your old phone as a music player, you don’t have to sweat it if you’re listening to tunes by the pool or say, on the beach.
For the kids – Your old phone makes a great starter device where you can download approved games and apps activate parental controls, and if the device gets broken or lost it’s less stress.
Donate – There are many organizations that benefit from your donation. In Canada the CNIB’s Phone it Forward program gives smartphones to people with sight loss who need them. Toronto General Hospital accepts donations of old phones to distribute to vulnerable people to give them the opportunity to access services where they may not have been able to before.
Recycle it – If none of the above suggestions work for you–perhaps your phone is broken beyond repair or completely obsolete–you’ll have to dispose of it. However, the trash isn’t the right place; it’ll need to be recycled.
There are some less than reputable electronics “recyclers” out there that prey on your good intentions. The best bet is to take the time to research what recycling options are available to you in your area.