Nothing lasts forever - What to do with old cell phones?
You have to get rid of your old cell phone at the latest when you hold your new (refurbished) smartphone in your hands. But wait: don't just put it in the next drawer, because it's too good for that. We'll tell you six ways you can recycle your used cell phone or turn it into cash!
Attention: Under no circumstances should you dispose of your old smartphone with household waste. This is not only extremely bad for the environment, as the battery contains highly toxic heavy metals, but also a real waste as it contains valuable raw materials that should definitely be recycled. Did you know that there are around 30 precious metals in your cell phone, such as copper, aluminum, silver, palladium and even gold?
What do you do with old cell phones? - The 6 best options
Selling is clear, but did you know that you can even use your old cell phone as a baby monitor replacement?
Option #1: Give the gift of joy!
“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder”, or in German “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder”. Even if your old cell phone has a few scratches, there is definitely someone who would still be happy about it. Swap it with friends or family for a bottle of your favorite wine or start a “to give away” ad in one of the many Facebook groups - it probably won’t be long before the first request comes in.
Option #2: Make it a new device!
Pack your SIM card into your new device and simply give your old cell phone a new purpose. Since you can access many apps and functions even without a SIM card, you can easily transform it into an eReader, a baby monitor, a music player or a navigation device:Music player: Do you like listening to motivating music during training, but don't want to take your brand new smartphone with you to the gym? With some apps, like Spotify, you can download your favorite playlists and listen to them in offline mode. If you have WiFi within range - all the better!
Option #3: Return to Provider
If your old cell phone was a gift from your ex and you just want to get rid of it quickly, your cell phone provider is a good place to start. Most providers, such as Vodafone, Teléfonica (O2) or Deutsche Telekom offer a return service. Simply throw it into one of the collection boxes in the shops or send it to your provider free of charge by post. Depending on the condition of your cell phone, the providers will recondition your device or recycle the raw materials it contains.
Option #4: Return to Store
The process is very similar when it comes to selling goods in the electronics market. Since 24. In July 2016, the law stipulated that you can hand in your old cell phone directly to your (online) retailer. But be careful: Find out in advance whether your market offers this service, as it is often only possible in large stores with a minimum sales area of 400 square meters. The big players like MediaMarkt and Co. have recently even set up EcoATM machines with which you can easily exchange your old cell phone for a voucher card. This only works with devices that can still be switched on, but it is still a good option because you even get something for your old device.
Option #5: Donate to a good cause
If you don't want to give away your old cell phone to friends or family, you can also donate it to a good cause. Non-profit organizations such as the Nature Conservation Association (NABU), Deutsche Umwelthilfe e.v (DUH) and We4Kids collect old devices:
- Nature Conservation Association (NABU): Together with Teléfonica, the Nature Conservation Association collects old cell phones, which it processes and resells in collaboration with a recycling partner. For example, the proceeds go to the NABU insect protection fund. This is how you do something good for bumblebees, bees and the like.!
- German Environmental Aid: German Environmental Aid also works with partners who specialize in recycling and processing old cell phones. The proceeds are used to support numerous environmental and nature conservation projects.
- We4Kids: If you send your old device to the non-profit organization We4Kids, it will benefit the “Cell phones for emergencies” project. The association equips the preloved cell phones with a prepaid card and passes them on to children in need. Let children's eyes shine!
There are countless other projects on the web that you can support with your old cell phone. Attention: Take some time and research providers and projects to check whether they actually act on a non-profit basis.
Option #6: Sell
When you ask yourself the question “What do I do with old cell phones,” the first thing that probably comes to mind is selling. If your smartphone is still fully functional or perhaps even quite up-to-date, you can easily turn it into cash. Especially with iPhones and “newer” Android smartphones from the big brands, you still have a good chance of making a decent profit. While you have good chances at online retailers or online marketplaces with newer cell phones, the classic flea market is suitable for rarities and collectibles:
Online dealer: It works particularly easily Sell to an online retailer who will check your device, send you a price proposal and take care of everything else. The money is in your account within a very short time - without any annoying buyer inquiries and annoying price negotiations!
Tips before selling your phone?
No matter whether you want to send in your old cell phones, donate them or bring them back to the store - before it's finally “time to say goodbye”, you should consider the following four tips:
So that you don't say "goodbye" to your vacation photos, contacts and your most important notes at the same time, you should create a backup or transfer your data to an external memory card. This works particularly easily with the cloud or free programs such as Dropbox and Co.
2. Delete data!
Be sure to remove your SIM and memory cards from your old cell phone. You can then reset it to factory settings to delete all your data and files from the internal storage.
3. Stay Original!
If you sell or give away your old cell phone, you should include all the accessories and the original packaging. This not only appears more serious, but also saves the buyer from having to search for important accessories, such as charging cables, headphones, adapters, etc.
4. Send correctly!
Even if you sold your old device at a bargain price, you should always send it insured to be protected!