How to recycle your phone, PC and other tech gear

By Preston Gralla, Computerworld |  Hardware, smartphones, tablets

At this site, you sell your electronics and receive the money as a gift card for Target or J&R. The prices are comparable to what Gazelle offers -- for example, an iPad 2 for $252.15 and $61 for a Droid X2. The site asks more questions about what you're selling (for example, if your iPad has been engraved, the price drops by $40) than some of the competitors.

Recycle your hardware -- not your data

Before you give your used device to a friend, a buyer or a recycling service, make sure that your data is completely removed from it -- otherwise, you could find yourself the victim of identity theft. For some tips on how to thoroughly erase your personal info, check out our article:

How to clear your data off a device


uSell will buy mobile phones, cameras, MP3 players, tablets, game consoles and e-readers. It works differently than the other buying sites -- rather than buying the electronics from you, it acts as a broker. Tell the site what you want to sell, and it searches through a network of electronics buyers and shows you the top five offers. Shipping is free. The method of payment will vary according to the buyer, with most typically offering to pay using PayPal or check. The top buyer for the iPad 2 offered $251.90, with one offer as low as $150. As for the Droid X2, the top offer was $60.50, with one offer as low as $35.

Recycle or give it away online

If your device is too old to sell or even donate, and it's not convenient to carry it to a recycler yourself, there are online services that can help.


Think of this as an online swap meet. Sign up for a local Freecycle Yahoo group near you, post what you've got to give away, and if anyone's interested, they'll let you know, and you can make arrangements for doing so. It also works in reverse -- join a group and see if someone is giving something away that you want.


This site recycles not just old electronics, but also a variety of computer-related waste, such as printer cartridges, CDs, DVDs and more. You'll have to pay, though, and payment varies according to what you recycle. For example, you'll pay $34.95 to recycle an old desktop PC with a monitor (under 17 inches) or $19.95 each for a CPU, laptop, monitor or printer. Shipping fees are included in the price.

For CDs, DVDs, cell phones, pagers and similar "technotrash" (the site's term), you buy a technotrash can, fill it and send it to be recycled. Price varies according to what you're recycling -- for example, $59.95 for up to 70 pounds of waste (that includes postage).


Originally published on Computerworld |  Click here to read the original story.
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