What Happens to My Old Phone?

Your current phone is most likely not your first phone. If you’re like most people, you probably get a new device around every 24 months. Some of those phones might have been damaged, or some of your old devices may have just been traded in for a newer model, but no matter what happens, an old phone is always left behind. So what exactly happens to those old phones?

Some phones that we see here at CDR Global are considered to be “BER” (Beyond Economic Repair), which means that it would cost too much to bring them back into a usable condition. If they were a car, we’d say that they’re totaled. For those phones, they can be stripped of their precious metals like gold, silver, and palladium, while the plastic elements can be shredded and sent to a recycler to become composite decking, running shoes, or almost anything else. For our clients, CDR Global is able to take BER devices and enter them into these recycling chains to recapture as much value as is available.

It’s important to note that when BER items are sent for de-manufacturing, CDR Global only uses vendors that have been thoroughly vetted and hold the proper certifications. We’ve dedicated a significant amount of time and effort into our Environmental Health and Safety Management System, and it’s a system that helps us act responsibly in our efforts, both for our staff as well as the people and environments that will deal with the inventory as it moves downstream, so to speak. If you were ever concerned about the environmental impact of recycling your devices, you can trust that CDR has the same concerns – and that we’re doing something about it.

But not every component has to be thrown out, even in devices that don’t work. Many times a refurbisher can pull parts from phones to reassemble a fully functioning device. At CDR Global, our first goal is to make a device, be it a laptop, cellphone, or any other IT-related equipment, and restore it to a condition that’s better than when it arrived. If it’s not economically feasible to do so, then we move forward with processes like de-manufacturing or donation.

At CDR Global, we’re able to help direct many devices, not just phones, into the hands of charities that are able to put them to good use. This delivers valuable hardware to deserving groups while giving equally valuable tax credits to our customers.

CDR Global is experienced in navigating the myriad of options available for hardware donations, and while different charities have different needs, an experienced ITAD vendor like CDR Global is going to make sure that you get the most value while doing the most good with your used equipment.

But even if your old phone doesn’t go directly to a non-profit or humanitarian cause, it can still find a way to do something good – It was recently announced that the medals for the 2020 (now 2021) Tokyo Olympics would made from precious metals recovered from old cell phones. Maybe yours will turn up there?

There are dozens upon dozens of ways to donate old hardware, and it not only helps a worthwhile charity, it can offer you valuable tax credits as well. If you’re thinking about finding a way to give your used hardware a second life, be sure to get in touch with us at CDR Global and we’ll find the win-win situation that’s right for you.


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