There must be millions of old cell phones festering away in drawers, forgotten and unloved, and soon to be consigned ingloriously to the rubbish dump. But before you send your ancient phone packing, check out our tips on how to squeeze that last little bit of juice out of your old pal.
1. Trade it for Cash
Ever wondered how much your old mobile phone could be worth? With Dial-a-Phone’s cash for old phone offer you can be getting back some of that money you originally spent, check it out here. Simply choose your phone, find out the value and then decide if you want to sell it, can’t get much simpler (this is to UK residents only).
2. Sell it on eBay
eBay is the largest auction website on the internet and if there’s any way to recoup some of the original value from your cell then this is the place. Listings are cheap to make and with the popularity of the service it’s more than likely that an interested web visitor is going to snap it up.
It’s a good idea to check around to see if others are selling the same model and see what they are getting in terms of bid amounts. If you are unhappy with what they are selling for then don’t expect to get much more money, and therefore it’s probably not a good idea to list it on the site.
3. Carry Two and Look Cool
If you have got on ‘old’ cell then we assume that the new one is better. Using two is going to keep you at the center of curiosity as others ask what they are for, whilst remaining obvious that you have some cash in the bank.
Some tips to keep in mind include making sure you don’t show them off in ‘bad areas’ and keeping your belt tight so that your pants don’t fall down with the added weight in your pockets.
4. Give it to a Family Member
There’s always a time when a birthday is coming up or you feel like you want to do something nice so why not use your old phone for just that. It may even be that a young one is looking to get their first mobile phone, if they are under 13 you are probably lucky. Otherwise, they are going to know all about phones and only be interested in the latest model…you have been warned.
5. Save for Spares
Phones, like most other electrical equipment, start failing at one time or another (usually the battery) and it can be an unneeded expense to buy new parts (battery / car-charger etc) if you’ve thrown out your old one along with your old cell.
Keep your phone if you have nothing more generous to do with it i.e. no.3 as you never know when it might come in handy.
6. Recycle and Help Save the Planet
Recycling your cell phone will not only make you feel good due to the fact that you are helping a good cause but apart from spares you have no excuse to hold on to unwanted clutter. If you live in the UK you can freepost your phone over to Oxfam and they will handle the rest, their website states that phones on average are worth 5 pounds to them.
If you live in the USA you can check out an equally environmentally-friendly program from recellular. Some interesting facts on the site show that 1 in 3 Americans change their mobile phone ever year, adding to the 500 million used phones that could easily be recycled.
7. Give it as an Xmas Present
With Christmas just around the corner, it’s an easy way for you to save getting in more debt by giving your phone to a family member, although it’s not as nice as a new phone, as long as they are getting something they didn’t have (or at least an upgrade) they will appreciate it.
If you don’t have a replacement in time for Christmas think about getting rid of the phone you have now this time next year or at least recycling when you replace it.
8. Turn it Into a Walkie-Talkie
Even back in 2003 the BBC were writing about the possibility for phones to be turned into unlimited range walkie talkies. Software that never seemed to really take off elsewhere apart from in America and even then it wasn’t too closely followed.
When we talk about turning your phone into something else, we talk about really creating something and thanks to this awesome guide from instructables you can do just that. This 6 step guide, created back in June 2006 shows you exactly what you need:
– In-Line coupler (I got mine at Frys for 1.49)
– 9 volt connector (radio shack, or cut it out of some old piece of junk)
– milk (helps keep you hydrated and keeps bones strong)
– Soldering iron
– 300 ohm resistor or close to it
– black electrical tape
– two telephones
– two telephone cords. (CAT 1 cable)
9. Paint it and Sell it
As stupid and as pointless as this may sound, it has the potential to bring you a lot more money than simply selling on eBay or a trade-in.
Well, first of all we have the guy who painted his PS3 white and sold it for thousands of dollars, and then there’s the popular website that will customize your ipod and iphone for you in the colours of your choice.
So then, what colour are you going to paint that old Motorola SLVR?
10. Smash it up and make a video
Everyone wants their chance of fame and things like this can be pretty popular, just check at the sheer number of video’s available on the most popular video sharing sites:
If you do a good job, you can even earn some money by uploading it to metacafe, a quick check at this week’s top earner and they made over $1,000, just make sure you smash it up in a creative way.
11. Use it for a Personal MP3 Player
If you’ve already got the equipment to make one then it saves you from having to go out and buy one, not only that but remember point 2 in that you will be able to look extremely cool.
– Beef up the memory if possible by adding an external memory card
– Get some earphones if any didn’t come with the phone
– Start adding your favorite songs by connecting your phone to your PC / laptop either via cable or Bluetooth
Enjoy your new personal MP3 player!
12. Enter the ‘World Phone Throwing Championships’
There are competitions you see on TV that are sometimes pretty unbelievable and the majority of them are from the Japanese. However, this one is a little more American and has certainly drawn an attraction.
Hundreds of people come from around the country to see who can throw their mobile phone the furthest. The current world record is a staggering 95.83 meters held by Chris Hughff of the UK.
13. Use it as a torch
Unless you are no longer using your old cell due to battery issues then this one could just be for you. I’m sure we’ve all at some point been in an incident where there has been a power cut or we have no light.
The perfect solution? Fully charge your old cell and keep it in a place where you can find easily in an emergency, not in a box on a high-up shelf. Simply turn it on and use the brightness of your screen to find a way, or if your camera has a flash, or even if your cell has a camera you can start taking random pictures to light your way to an exit or the electricity box.
14. Start making those prank calls
There’s one of two things to make sure before you go ahead with this one, that either your old phone number isn’t linked to you or you put your old SIM in your new cell and use your new SIM in your old cell (did you get all that?). Oh yeah, and don’t do this to anything serious like the emergency services, lives and worth your moments of fun.
Sometimes prank calls can go too far, like when this teenager phoned the Whitehouse asking for George Bush, days later the police came around his house and said that if he did not reveal where the number came from he would be banned any access to the united states.
Some ideas to start you off
– Phone a neighbour, proceed to give all details you know about them and tell them that they have won a special prize / the lottery. Give details not just anybody would know to help them believe
– Phone the Whitehouse from an Icelandic phone number and ask for president bush…on second thoughts, that’s probably not a good idea