Do you have an old smartphone lying around? If it connects to Wi-Fi, it can still be a handy addition to the household. There are a number of ways you can repurpose that old mobile device.
While we’re sheltering in place these days, you may find yourself connecting with family and friends a lot via Skype, FaceTime, or other video chat platforms. Your old smartphone can serve as a dedicated interface for video chats. The kids no longer have to borrow your phone to call grandma or their friends, and your smartphone remains open for incoming calls and other alerts.
With so many of us working from home and conducting video meetings, webcams are in short supply. You can turn to an old smartphone into a webcam one of many mobile apps designed to connect your phone’s camera to your PC.
If you have an old phone that’s no longer in use, turn it into a home security camera. First, download a security camera app onto both your old and new devices. Then mount the old phone where you need activity monitored, making sure your device has access to power. Now use your current smartphone to log in and view the feed from your old smartphone.
With the security cam app installed, your old phone isn’t limited to use as a security camera. Mount it in the nursery as a baby-monitor or in an area where your pet frequents as a pet-cam.
Most TV media streaming devices, ex) Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, come with their own remote control, but can the remotes that come with them be any smaller?
Try using your old phone instead, as these services typically have their own mobile app. Simply download it on your old device, link your account, and your old phone can now be used as the remote control.
If you subscribe to a music streaming service, listen to audiobooks or podcasts, consider using your old smartphone as the dedicated output. Set your old device on a charging stand, and pop in some wireless earbuds or connect your phone to a Bluetooth speaker. Then crank it up!
When downloading any mobile applications, make sure you’ve done your research on security and privacy.
Consider your security and be kind to the environment.
Before disposing of your old phone, ensure your personal information is wiped. Reset the phone to factory settings and remove the SIM card. When you finally dispose of the phone, please recycle it. Take it to an electronics recycling collector or recycling depot. The phone contains component materials that can be reused or recycled, and other materials that are harmful to the environment will be properly contained for disposal by the electronics recycler.
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