Traditionally, the technology industry has been quite cyclical, with most consumer electronics going through phases of the purchase, ageing, becoming obsolete, and disposal. These days, however, consumer behaviour around smartphones has changed quite substantially, whereby people are holding onto phones more and more, with a second-hand market booming as consumers are taking advantage of others’ unwanted devices.
Trading in and buying trade-in phones
While the concept of trading in and buying trade-in phones is in itself a fantastic cost-saving and affordable way to either get some money for older devices, or pick up a great device at a discounted price, it also has a huge roll-on effect for the environment.
This is because fewer and fewer phones are being discarded and recycled, which while helpful, is actually a huge energy-demanding process due to the recycling process of batteries and tech hardware which makes us electronic waste.
Electronic waste, which is often referred to as e-waste, is one of the fastest-growing waste categories in the world. According to the United Nations, an estimated 50 million tons of e-waste are generated globally every year. E-waste contains a variety of toxic chemicals which can seep into the soil and groundwater, causing damage to the environment and endangering the health of wildlife and humans. By buying pre-owned and reusing electronics, you can keep these products out of landfills and reduce the amount of toxic materials that are released into the environment.
Restoration or reusing of electronic devices
This means that the restoration or reusing of electronic devices can keep them out of landfills, and therefore reduce the demand for more manufacturing. It may seem small, but if everyone is doing it, it makes a huge difference as the reusing of electronics can have a dramatic impact on reducing global carbon emissions. For example, the production of a laptop or cell phone requires the extraction of raw materials, such as metals and plastics, from the earth.
While the disposal of these e-waste items is detrimental to the planet, the energy it takes to simply manufacture these products is also considerable. By reusing and repurposing existing products, we can reduce the demand for new technology and prevent the production of more emissions.
Therefore, the power is in the consumers’ hands as to whether you want to help with the growing industry of reusing and re-loving ‘old’ tech. Choosing to embrace the trade-in industry instead of buying new devices can be a great way to save money on a new device; and by selling your old device, you can get money off the purchase of a new one.
Trade-ins are therefore a more sustainable option than throwing away your old device and buying a brand new one, and also plugs into the reusability process that results in tech becoming more accessible to a broader demographic, as trading in your old device will help those who can’t afford a new device. You can find great deals on smartphones through Mobitronics, with more affordable pre-owned phones also available.