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Show Your Old Mobile Phones Some Love on #Valentine’s Day

Posted by Henry Cheang | February 13, 2015 7:00 AM

It’s all about the love of technology

Mobile phones: They never leave our hands. They are indispensable for the professional and the personal, and as such they basically contain our life. We just love our devices because they help us work smarter. We’ve already covered 3 ways the love of mobile devices will change IT best practices.

Now is the time to tackle another important question: What should we do with our old mobile phones? Especially if you’ve grown attached to your old phone? Well, if you truly love a particular mobile phone, you can still use it long after it stops being powerful enough for work purposes. The following tips will show you how to make the most use of a device that you well and truly love.Valentine_2015_blog_EN

1. Use the old device as a backup device via workarounds

Let’s face facts: Your old (smart)phone won’t be able to compete with your new phone on most fronts, but that doesn’t mean that it stops being a (smart)phone. Even if you don’t have a SIM card in that mobile device anymore, it is still possible to connect to Wi-Fi and use it for something else (while saving some 3G or 4G LTE data usage expenses). For example, it is possible to make phone calls through the internet by using Skype, FaceTime or other video calling apps.

GPS: You could also use your old device as a portable GPS map when you’re on the road. You won’t be able to look for a specific place while on the road, but if you download the desired city maps or addresses beforehand and store them on the old device you can still use the old phone to guide your journey. Apps like BE-ON-ROAD and TomTom can provide that service while your new phone stays charged.

Basically, you have no more excuses for missing your co-workers’ phone calls or getting lost during a business trip because you had to choose between using your smartphone as a GPS or as an actual phone. It’s a great way to encourage accountability.

2. Repurpose the old device

MP3 media player: Alternately, you can refocus your old device to be used as something else altogether different. You know all those new songs you bought last month? Well by using your old phone as a MP3 media player, you can save storage space in your new one. You can also save those thousands of selfies, videos, notes, or documents on that miniature external hard drive. That leaves you with a lot more space to store new moments or projects in your brand new device.

Remote control: Your old mobile device could also be converted into a universal remote control. How? By downloading an app like IR 2.0, you can control most of the devices around the house. Of course, this free app only works with smartphones and tablets that have an “infra-red” (IR) blaster, such as the Samsung Galaxy S4 and S5, the Galaxy Note 3 and the HTC ONE M8 and M7, amongst others.

Alarm clock: You could also use your old smartphone as your main alarm clock. Do that, and you can stop worrying about the new phone having enough charge to last through the night (because you replied to those late night emails and phone calls). 

Phone for your travels: When on a short trip, many people don’t purchase international phone calls minutes because they can use the internet for most of their short-term calling needs. By using your old phone as your main phone while travelling, you’re not only reducing your risk of unexpected mobile phone bills, but you’re also reducing the risk of theft or loss of your brand new phone. As seen previously, a Wi-Fi hotspot is the only thing you need to make it useful.

Toy for kids: Your children can certainly benefit from your old phone even if you can’t use it for work anymore. Turn your old device into a fun and educational gadget for your kids to play when waiting in lines or restaurants, by downloading games tailored specifically to them. You can even restrict the access to certain programs with the parental control features of iPhones or download an app such as Zoodles Kid Mode for Android users.

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3. Get rid of it for a good cause

If you don’t think that you can repurpose or reuse your old mobile device, then give it to someone who needs a phone, but not the latest model. You can also give the old devices to someone who will recognize its true worth: Recycling organizations.

For example, Canada’s national recycling program for mobile devices, Recycle My Cell, is one such group. Recycle My Cell has helped consumers keep cell phones out of the landfill, helping the environment. It is incredible to think that 977 tons of discarded cell phones were diverted from landfills since 2005 thanks to this program. Some of the donated phones have also been sold, and the revenues were distributed to charitable organizations across Canada.

Remember, discarded cell phones generate incredible amounts of waste. Therefore, you can help save the planet and aid your fellow man by donating your old devices.

These tips scale…

The beauty of the above suggestions is that they work on an individual level and are also useful for people who manage whole fleets of mobile devices. Any step you can take to somehow reuse or repurpose your old IT and telecom assets directly translates into a way to stretch IT budget. Who wouldn’t want to stretch their IT budget? Beyond that, in this age of green awareness, recycling old phones is a great way to improve your company’s processes. It all adds up, and is a key way to work smarter.

Speaking of which, one of Cimpl’s goals is to help you work smarter. We love technology and mobile devices just as much as you do, and that’s why we keep finding new ways to help your company manage IT and telecom assets. With the BYOD trend still on rise, it is harder for businesses to keep track of telecom expenses and there is a stronger need to secure BYOD. See how we can help your organization find out the true cost of BYOD and this way cut inventory costs! Taking a step back, we hope that this blog helped you learn how to show a little more love to your old devices!


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Topics: BYOD, Mobile Devices, Work Smarter, Tips, Best Practices, Technologies

Written by Henry Cheang

Henry has a lifelong passion for science and technology. This enthusiasm is put to good use in a cutting-edge software company like Cimpl. As product marketer, Henry researches market and user needs to develop user and buyer personas, contributes to product design, and helps coordinate product messaging. Henry also writes nearly the entirety of all documentation for Cimpl’s many successful platforms. In his spare time, Henry devotes much energy to family, friends, and martial arts. Henry recently completed his Master’s in Business and Administration from Concordia University, where he specialized in the study of marketing, organizational behavior, and corporate governance. He has authored academic papers on the latter two subjects; these papers form part of his bibliography of over 20 professional research publications.

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