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Out with the Old, In with the New: Why Secondhand Phones Shouldn’t Be Embarrassing

Every year, a new flagship phone is released. Later in 2020, Sony will release PS5. There’s probably a new set of Airpods waiting to be manufactured soon.

In this age of technology, innovations come out more often than anticipated, and more often than people’s wallets can handle. We have come to a point where phones signify social status. A new flagship phone means they have hundreds of dollars to spare. Those whose phones stick have thick bezels and chins, they may seem like stuck in the past.

The fascination for new technology is totally understandable. For every new release, there are features that older phones can’t do. The displays have better resolution, and the processors are more powerful.

Do you really need to change every year?

Not necessarily.

Like all relatively big purchases in life, you need to weigh your options. Is your phone still working? Do apps boot quickly? Does the phone fit your lifestyle? What features does the new phone have that will significantly improve your life? Most of all, can you afford it?

There are many reasons for consumers to change their phones upon the release of flagship devices. Some need powerful specs because they frequently play games. Some need an amazing camera quality for content creation. Some need to see the video call while multitasking on their phones.

At the end of the day, it depends on the person. However, factors like waste and everything that goes into manufacturing should be kept in mind. If you do change your phone, it would be best to hand it down.

You’re saving more than just money with hand-me-downs.

People are apprehensive about buying secondhand phones because they fear that it might be damaged, or they will not get the right value out of it. This is why the first rule of secondhand shopping for gadgets is to trust the seller. Whether it is your friend or a local store, it’s essential to ask as many questions as you can and inspect the item.

Local stores also have warranty management technology to ensure the item is in good shape when you acquire it. This is a great way to keep you at ease and lessen your worries about the quality of the product.

Most of all, buying secondhand helps control your carbon footprint. Like every manufacturing process, the making of a phone goes through factories, importation, and exportation. All these processes release harmful gases to the environment because of the “on-site combustion of fossil fuels for heat and power, non-energy use of fossil fuels, and chemical processes used in iron [and] steel.”

Whoever throws away a perfectly good phone clearly doesn’t have financial concerns, but doing so releases combustible and toxic chemicals into the air. Another phone in the landfill will be an addition to the 70 percent of toxic waste in the heaps of garbage. Instead of doing so, you can either sell it, give it, or participate in a circular economy where every part of the phone will be repurposed.

“Out with the old, in with the new” might be the standard practice for tech geeks. For this cycle to become sustainable, handing it down can benefit so many people as well as the environment.

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