Second Hand Phones: What To Do

It’s safe to say the average person upgrades or changes their phone on a regular basis. For some, this could be every year, whilst others might only upgrade periodically every few years. Yet the end result is the same; over time, this amounts to a small pile of unwanted and unused phones lying around the house. We don’t know what to do with them, so they often become part of the home, collecting dust in various forgotten corners and drawers.

Yet there is always something that can be done. Just because you no longer want or use a phone doesn’t mean there isn’t someone out there who would. From passing it along to the benefits of mobile phone recycling, there is always a market or audience out there. Like the old saying goes, one man’s garbage is another man’s treasure.

 Passing It Down

Not everyone can afford a phone. Likewise, not every really wants the newest and latest model. There are various instances when someone might just want a phone for the simple purpose of making the occasional phone call, or simply for emergencies. There are other instances too, where passing your old phone down has its benefits and potential.

Take younger children, for instance. If they want a phone, it can often be expensive to buy one. Giving them an old phone gives them something that works, yet it also gives them something to learn with. Part of having a phone, like anything, is learning responsibility for it. As such, if an old phone inevitably gets lost, you haven’t lost a brand new phone.


Everyone knows what recycling is, yet it’s seldom considered with mobile phones and gadgets. Our T.V gets recycled, as do fridges and other large units. Yet these aren’t so different for smaller gadgets, you just need to know where to look.

In the case of mobile phones, there’s great online business for recycling these. From your end and perspective, this is simply a case of looking up the phone model, seeing how much it’s worth, and sending it off. The value can be quite surprising, too. Then again, considering it’s a phone which has no use or purpose to you, its value is nothing. As such, any money you make off of a well used phone is nothing but profit.

It should also be noted that the recycling industry is usually more generous than the second hand phone market. This is because a phones appeal can age, whilst the key components and resources are still in demand. The older your phone is, the less you’ll get for it at a second-hand shop, whilst recycling ensures it keeps a constant value throughout.

In short, these are just a few of your options, but it should hopefully show that you are not without a choice. Whether you pass it down to someone in need, or sell it for profit, it ensures the phone does much more than sit forgotten in your home.

Jill Pearce is a technology enthusiast and blogger with a keen eye and passion for keeping things both affordable and practical. This involves writing posts on areas such as mobile phone recycling, where a tech junkie’s cravings need to meet financial responsibilities.

6 thoughts on “Second Hand Phones: What To Do”

  1. Users, on average replace mobiles every 11 months, according to Environmental Mobile Control (EMC), a leading international mobile phone recycling company owned by Redeem that focuses on B2B recycling. EMC are specialists in mobile phone recovery. They state (March 2011) it is estimated that up to 90 million mobile phones are discarded in drawers and cupboards across the UK; that’s amazing. To put it in perspective, these weigh 11,250 tonnes, the equivalent to more than 30 Boeing 747s! They are a hazard if discarded but if they are recycled they can be put to very good use. Wikipedia estimates that there were about 76 million phone users in the UK in Dec 2008 (Ref: Wikipedia, Mar 2011), with 5 billion mobile phone users world-wide in 2010 (Ref: Wikipedia, Mar 2011) and this number is steadily rising. EMC also state that a mobile phone is sold every minute in the UK. So, millions of old phones could potentially be recycled annually, although it is estimated that only a small percentage are. To comply with the WEEE directive, all companies should ensure that all mobile phones are recycled. The detailed terms are more complicated than this, however, and interested parties (producers and suppliers especially) should look to the Industry Council For Electronic Equipment Recycling web site.

  2. If you want to recycle your phone for cash today, then you’ve come to the right place! 8 mobile is a mobile phone recycling company with a difference. We pay you your money straight into your bank account within 48 hours of receiving your mobile phone!

  3. A recent study from a leading mobile phone recycling comparison website has found that the average price of second hand mobile phones has increased to £101 per device. The study, which compiled data from over forty of the top mobile phone recycling services, averaged the final sale prices of each second-hand device purchased by the service.

  4. Is your old mobile phone made from hidden treasure? Each year, networks commonly offer to upgrade phones meaning an estimated 80 million old ones sit in dark, dank parts of UK homes. This is a step-by-step guide to mobile phone recycling, including the mobile selling comparison tool, to find who pays the mos if you sell your mobile. You could get up to £150 per handset.

  5. My daughter breaks even on every iPhone she has bought. She is able to sell it for what she paid for it 2 years later. I still have the old style flip phone and donate it to charities.

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