Digital Crave

How to get rid of your mobile phone (properly)

Digital Crave

View photo

.

Not surprisingly, there is a downside to our increased reliance on tech toys: electronic waste ("e-waste") that ends up in our landfills.

Consumer electronics often contain toxic substances such as cadmium, lead, mercury, beryllium, polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and brominated flame retardants (BFRs), to name a few of the nasty ones, and this toxic runoff poisons our soil, water and ecosystems.

Cell phones and smartphones are culprits, too, not to mention we ditch them more often than other consumer electronics products like televisions, computers, cameras, and the like.

If you're unable to sell or donate your aging phone — both options are better than recycling — the first step is to properly back-up your important information.

Not only could you use the info on your next phone — such as contacts, calendar appointments, documents, photos, notes, web bookmarks, and so on — but you don't want this personal (or professional) data falling into the wrong hands. To do this, connect your smartphone to your computer to perform a back-up, copy all the contents to a removable memory card (if your phone takes one) or use one of the many password-protected "cloud" (online) services available.

To restore your device back to its original settings, take out the SIM card and memory card and go to your phone's Options or Settings menu. This process varies between devices but all phones let you restore to its original state.

Once you have a clean phone, you can properly recycle it by dropping it off at a consumer electronics retailer (such as Best Buy or Staples), wireless carrier store (such as an AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile or Verizon location, for example) or a non-profit group in your area that have programs to recycle or refurbish unwanted consumer electronics products.

Many smartphone makers also offer mail-in or drop-off programs to properly recycle end-of-life devices, such as this Apple service.

The U.S. Postal Service also has an extensive "Mail Back" program that allows customers to recycle small electronics and inkjet cartridges for free (more info here). Other options for donating and recycling are at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) website or consider companies like CellForCash.com that give you money for used mobile phones (usually newer ones).

Check out more tech trends and news at Digital Crave

Sorry you didn't like this comment. Please provide a reason below.

Are you sure?
Rating failed. Try again.
Request failed. Try again.
We will promote constructive and witty comments to the top, so everyone sees them!
Sorry, we can’t load comments right now. Try again.

    Recommended for You

    • So What Happened Last Night In Sweden? Donald Trump Saw It On Fox News – Update

      Updated 2:07 pm Sunday, with Trump response  President Donald Trump has explained his Sweden comment: He saw it on Fox. “My statement as to what’s happening in Sweden was in reference to a story that was broadcast on @FoxNews concerning immigrants & Sweden,” he’s just tweeted. My statement as to what's happening in Sweden was in reference to a story that was broadcast on @FoxNews concerning immigrants & Sweden. — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 19…

      Deadline
    • Here’s what Trump’s reference to Sweden was about

      President Donald Trump raised eyebrows Saturday evening during a rally in Melbourne, Fla., where he delivered a lengthy campaign-style speech, defending his recent executive orders and outlining his political ...

      MarketWatch q 6 min ago
    • 10 MLB Stadiums You Should Avoid at All Costs

      Baseball stadiums are a unique experience, unlike what you can experience in any other sport. Here are the 7 worst MLB stadiums currently in use.

      The Cheat Sheet q 28 min ago
    • Chrissy Metz Slams Body Shamers Who Criticized Lady Gaga After Super Bowl Halftime Show

      This is Us star Chrissy Metz isn’t mincing words when it comes to Lady Gaga‘s recent bout with body shamers. During a recent episode of SiriusXM’s Just Jenny, 36-year-old Metz spoke passionately about the criticism Gaga received after the singer wore a stomach-baring outfit during her Super Bowl LI halftime show performance. How is someone fat if they’re not fat?” Metz began.

      People
    • Police: Man in photos now 'main suspect' in 2 girls' deaths

      DELPHI, Ind. (AP) — A man photographed walking along a northern Indiana trail system around the time two teenage girls later found slain were dropped off by a relative is now considered "the main suspect" in their killings, State Police said Sunday.

      Associated Press
    • A 31-year-old millionaire who's read 360 personal finance books shares his favorite

      Grant of Millennial Money went from having $2.26 in his bank account to $1 million.

      CNBC.com q
    • Father and Son Killed In Head-On Collision With One Another

      Police said alcohol was a factor in the crash.

      Inside Edition
    • SB Nation q 18 min ago
    • J.K. Rowling has the best response to Trump's non-existent Sweden attack

      The internet can't get enough of President Donald Trump's "last night in Sweden" remarks, including, of course, J.K. Rowling. Never one to shy from a little fun at the expense of the U.S. president, the author joined in on Twitter's response to Trump's confusing reference to a terrorist attack that didn't actually happen. SEE ALSO: Internet turns to @Sweden on Twitter after Trump appears to invent terror attack Literally the biggest incident of Sweden last night was a horse called Biscuit being rescued from a well. https://t.co/CAYsHhpt6z — Grapey (@Grapeykins) February 19, 2017 #MakeBiscuitDryAgain https://t.co/C7rPpZrcNf — J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) February 19, 2017 Naturally, Rowling's hashtag kicked off a whole new riff on Trump's Sweden comments.  Poor Biscuit, after #BowlingGreen, why didn't Sweden see this coming and do something to prevent such an atrocity? #MakeBiscuitDryAgain — Bren (@bnboring) February 19, 2017 Thanks to your prayers @jk_rowling Biscuit soon dry again #MakeBiscuitDryAgain @ChelseaClinton pic.twitter.com/shs4SnlM7P — Leif Pagrotsky (@leifpagrotsky) February 19, 2017 What's that, Lassie?! Who fell down the well?? #swedenincident #MakeBiscuitDryAgain https://t.co/6Aoc9yfzz0 — MJ (@meencat) February 19, 2017 A quick refresher: During a speech at a rally in Melbourne, Florida, held Saturday night, Trump sandwiched a vague reference to Sweden between references to recent terrorist attacks in Germany, France and Belgium.  From a transcript of his speech:  As many have noted, nothing close to the attacks he referenced in his speech happened in Sweden on Friday night. Even Sweden's former prime minister struggled to make sense of Trump's comment: Sweden? Terror attack? What has he been smoking? Questions abound. https://t.co/XWgw8Fz7tj — Carl Bildt (@carlbildt) February 19, 2017 As for the horse, let's all hope its OK after its terrifying ordeal.  [H/T: Huffington Post] BONUS: The secret love affair between Harry Potter and Voldemort

      Mashable
    • If You Make Less Than $50,000, Don't Forget These 3 Tax Breaks -- The Motley Fool

      These tax provisions are aimed at those with modest incomes. Find out more about them.

      The Motley Fool q
    • This dog arrived at a shelter with a seriously detailed notebook from a kid who adored him, and we’re crying

      Today in super cute and completely heartbreaking news, a dog recently arrived at the Humane Society of Utah with VERY specific instructions.

      Hello Giggles
    • The Eagles' Timothy B Schmit interview: ‘Tensions ran very deep'

      ‘It seems like people are just dropping off the Earth,” says Timothy B Schmit. The Eagles bassist is contemplating the death last year of Glenn Frey, the group’s founder and the man who co-wrote some of the most popular songs of the 20th century, including Hotel California and Take it Easy. “It’s just so f---ing weird, you know?” says Schmit.

      The Telegraph
    • Father and Son Killed in Head-On Collision After Their Cars Crash into Each Other While Returning Home

      Alabama investigators claim that alcohol played a considerable role in a horrific head-on collision that killed a father and son that were driving separate vehicles early Saturday. According to AL.com, Jeffrey Morris Brasher, 50, and Austin Blaine Brasher, 22, were both killed in a crash that occurred shortly after 4 a.m. on Saturday. • Pick up PEOPLE’s special edition True Crime Stories: Cases That Shocked America, on sale now, for the latest on Casey Anthony, JonBenét Ramsey and more.

      People
    • Got a Craving? Here's What Your Body Actually Wants You to Eat (9 photos)

      Ever find yourself rummaging through the fridge or kitchen cabinets for that delicious, satisfying something --except nothing seems to fill that void? Maybe you know what you're craving, but would actually have to leave the house to go and buy it (who wants to do that?), or your craving is so ambiguous that even browsing the supermarket aisles might leave you stuck. Turns out, there's more to your hankering than just hunger. "Often a food 'search' can arise when you're in need of a break from work or sitting, so by nature you get up and stir around," explains Lisa Cohn, RD, a New York City-based nutritionist. "Other times a quest can be triggered by an emotional or physical reaction that leaves us feeling frozen or out of control, and the act of searching for something to eat gives us a determination to take control." VIDEO: How to Make Banana Blueberry Overnight Oats While there are several other potential reasons for sudden cravings, including a nutrient deficiency, sleep deprivation, and low blood sugar, there are healthy and satisfying snack choices you can make to quench a craving until your next meal. Here are nine expert-approved solutions and substitutes for every kind of craving.

      InStyle
    • College student opened care package from mom, it was the trash he forgot to take out

      When Cox, who is a freshman at Westminster College in New Wilmington, Pennsylvania, thought he was opening up his usual care package from his mom, what he found inside instead was trash. Cox, who is originally from Leonardtown, Maryland, immediately called his mother Terri to ask what was with the box of trash. "[She said,] 'No, that's the trash you were supposed to take out,'" he added, laughing.

      Good Morning America
    • Priscilla Presley Confirms She's Caring for Granddaughters as Lisa Marie Presley’s Husband Is Investigated for Child Abuse

      Priscilla Presley has broken her silence over her daughter Lisa Marie Presley’s bitter custody battle and confirmed she’s caring for her twin granddaughters. “Thank you from the bottom of my heart for “all” your positive support,” she wrote above a photo of the sisters smiling and cuddling one another.

      Us Weekly
    • 12 workers fired for skipping work during 'Day Without Immigrants' protest in Oklahoma

      Twelve employees of a Tulsa-area restaurant are without a job after skipping work on the "Day Without Immigrants."

      KABC – Los Angeles
    • New York attorney general bids to become Trump's No. 1 enemy

      NEW YORK (AP) — More than most, Eric Schneiderman understands the risks of taking on Donald Trump.

      Associated Press
    • Elderly Woman Stuck in Chair for Months Found `Molded` to Chair

      Residents in a Springfield Township neighborhood had no idea one of their neighbors was living in squalor until emergency vehicles lit up their typically quiet street, the Toledo Blade reported.

      Tribune