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How to repurpose your old phone

Got a new phone? Here's how you can make use of the old one smartly

After buying a new phone, most people wonder how to discard their old mobile phones. Since adding to the ever-increasing e-waste doesn’t seem to be a great option, here are a few tips on how you can reuse or repurpose your old mobile phones in unique ways:

Use mobile phone as a universal remote

Most of the newer mobile models come with IR-blaster and in-built apps to be used as remotes for various electronic devices. Power your TV, air conditioners, cable boxes and other smart electronics with such phone-turned-IR remotes. Various apps are also available on Google Play Store that can help with this process. Set it up in a particular room so that it can be used to power almost all smart electronics of that particular area.

Use old mobile phone as a security system

Investing in CCTV cameras is not always possible. Google Play Store consists a variety of apps that can be connected to numerous old devices to set up a security system. Alfred, AtHome Camera, WardenCam are some of the mobile apps you can use to set up your own home security camera in just a few minutes. These applications offer features like 24X7 live streaming, walkie-talkie modes and even cloud storages on purchase to avoid filling the phone’s memory. They can also be used as a baby monitor.

Use old mobile phone as a tool for leisure

An old phone can be turned into a tool for your leisure activities. You can store most of your music files in the old phone to create an offline music player, which can be useful for those times you need to relax and not be interrupted by any text messages or calls.

Also, keeping old phones or tablets as an ebook reader is another way of using them offline. You can download some ebooks and keep the device in your nightstand for some night time reading without any interruptions of social media or work. You can also place it permanently in your kitchen to use it as an ebook for food recipes.

Use old mobile phone as a webcam for PC

Owning a PC without a good webcam could be a problem during the era of work from home. Mobile applications like DroidCam offer a chance to turn your phone into a webcam for your computer over WiFi or USB. The app uses PC Client to install webcam drivers and connects the computer with the Android device. This will be useful for those who have phones lying around with a much better camera quality than the PC’s in-built webcam.

Store old mobile phone for basic use

Many people reuse their phones by installing simple clock and calendar apps on them and mounting the phone on bedroom or bathroom walls for a stylish, modern look. You can even install a light sensor app that only turns on the display when the bathroom light is on.

Alternatively, you may never know when your new device might give out. So, having a backup is necessary. Store your phone for those just-in-case situations.

Donate or recycle old mobile phone

India is the third-largest contributor to e-waste in the world. So, if you have an old phone which does not work at all, it is better to safely dispose of it to the nearest e-waste collection centre/recycler. Usually, the contacts of such services are available on the internet. Cashify is one of the services that can accept your old phones for recycling. You can also donate the old phone if it has its basic functions working fine.

Anushka Shrivastava
Media student | Writer | Avid Reader

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