Smart phones are an important addition to the world’s social lexicon. One small note about Smart phones is that these little devices are as powerful as the computers that first sent man to moon. The continued growth in use, and addiction this new appendage has created concern of how best to transition from one device to the next. The growing popularity of this device has seen the most significant growth with the younger segment of our society.
“Teenagers are not only leaving behind books and television in favor of their smart phone, adults are becoming slaves to their handhelds, too. 37% of adults and 60% of teenagers in a study admit to being “highly addicted” to their smart phones,” says Zack Whittaker (2011).
The growing popularity of these devices has also created a growing problem with what to do when its time to discard our old friend. As we upgrade from one device to the next we are confronted with the options of if we should throw these devices away in the trash bin, dropping it off at a recycle center or simply holding on to them. The question of privacy and recycling options still loom.
The concerns around privacy when recycling an old cell phone are real. In addressing the concern of privacy I recommend both restoring your phone to its factory defaults when you are making the transition, this step include deleting the data on the device as well. Next, remove the Simm card which is often found on the inside of the phone near the battery. Once you’ve removed the Simm card, cut it like you would an old credit card. The Simm card stores additional data like photos, phone numbers and other important data.
Outlets exists that would happily take your used cell phones. Staple Stores, would be my first choice for recycling centers. Advocacy organizations like Chicago Recycling which can be found at http://www.chicagorecycling.org/index.htm has plenty of information on how best to recycle your old cell phones and other items.
Smart phones and other cellphones alike has over the past decode created both tremendous opportunity in staying connected with the world with access to Facebook, Email, and reading the News, but also created a carbon burden. Disposing of these appendages has become a great problem. The natural breakdown of these devices in a land field is unlike most refuse, a cellphone doesn’t decompose, its an element therefore, it is likely to sit in a land field forever.
We can reduce the negative carbon impact of our addiction to smart phones, by correctly disposing of them.