** This post is brought to you by ecoATM. All thoughts and opinions are strictly my own**
Last December, my husband and I both upgraded our phones from the iPhone 4 to the iPhone 5C. At the time, we were no longer under contract with our provider, but had an awesome data plan that we didn’t want to lose, so we bought our phones outright. With our provider, normally when you take the upgrade option with them, you have to turn in your old phone, but since we bought the phones at full price – we got to keep the old ones. Neither of us really had any use for the old iPhone 4’s, so they were basically just sitting around collecting dust.
Did you know that nearly nine out of 10 American device owners have outdated and unused items at home, but only 10 percent or less have tried to earn money from their old devices?
That is where ecoATM comes in. You may have seen their kiosks around in shopping malls and select Walmart stores. ecoATM is a nationwide network of automated electronic recycling kiosks that provides cash payments for unwanted mobile phones, tablets and MP3 players that would otherwise end up in landfills.
As soon as I heard about ecoATM, I had to go check it out for myself. As it turns out there was a kiosk at my local mall (The Silver City Galleria in Taunton, MA), so I grabbed our old iPhones and Chris & we took a ride over to the mall. We found the kiosk and followed the step by step instructions (written on the screen of the machine and spoken) to recycle our old phones. The process only took a few minutes and it really couldn’t have been easier.
To date, ecoATM has recycled more than 500,000 pounds of devices in its four-year history—that includes more than 2 million individual devices, 70,000 pounds of copper and over 1,500 pounds of silver.
Here are some facts about ecoATM
• The first ecoATM was installed in September 2009; there are approximately 900 kiosks2 in malls and large retailers in 42 states.
• Cash given for mobile devices ranges from $1 to $300 per device, and every transaction provides an opportunity to donate some or all proceeds to charity.
• ecoATM is able to find a second life for 75 percent of devices collected. For the remaining 25 percent of devices, ecoATM partners with certified eWaste reclamation facilities to ensure those materials are responsibly reused and recycled.
• According to EPA calculator tables, the average environmental impact of a single ecoATM recycling phones over a one year period is equivalent to the energy savings of taking four U.S. houses off the grid.
• In 2013, the ecoATM network of kiosks resulted in a savings equivalent to enough electricity to power more than 2,750 U.S. homes and a hazardous waste reduction equivalent to the weight of 267 refrigerators.
ecoATM kiosks accept devices of any era or condition and use a worldwide auction system to offer consumers competitive prices depending upon condition, which can include a few hundred dollars for newer smartphones. Some very old phones may not be worth anything, but with ecoATM, consumers can rest assured knowing that they will be responsibly recycled. ecoATM is able to find a second life for 75 percent of devices collected. For the remaining 25 percent, ecoATM partners with certified e-waste reclamation facilities to ensure those materials are responsibly reused and recycled.
Do you have any old devices that you could recycle?