Have you recently upgraded to a shiny new pocket brick & you want to sell your old iPhone or smartphone? Maybe you’re planning to upgrade your tablet to the iPad Air 2? Here’s the Powered Labs’ guide to recycling your retired tech – why not offset some of the cost of that new high-dollar investment?

Whether you were on the Apple tip with the iPhone 6, 6+ or the iPad Air 2 being announced Thursday at the iPad Live event, the Samsung Note 4 and Note Edge or the new iteration of the HTC One, the M8, chances are you’re upgrading from an older device. Every year we crave more power, higher definition, bigger screens, lighter weight – the eternally sought after pipe-dreams of the future that exponentially increase like a fractal. We look back at our old phones and think about how outdated they are, but not everyone is lucky enough to be strutting around touting cutting edge technology. Instead of making a new paperweight for your office desk, coaster for your coffee table, or, god forbid, throwing your phone in the TRASH (<– don’t do that!) there are other options to consider post-metamorphosis to the newer and better.


swappa.com // Swappa launched in 2010 as a digital marketplace to buy and sell gently used, fully functional mobile phones and tablets. Last year, they reported that over $7,000,000 worth of used mobile devices were sold on Swappa and that over $2,000,000 worth of mobile devices are sold every month, as of July 2014. They even started a secondary marketplace called the Boneyard, where you can sell and buy broken phones, flashed phones, parts and accessories. It is a free service to buy and sell, they process with PayPal, and their staff reviews and approves all listings.

eBay: For the Win

pages.ebay.com/ebayforthewin // Flip Your Phone For The Win (#ebayforthewin) is the internet-culture relevant colloquial tagline of eBay’s dedicated page to sell mobile phones. They have some helpful references to guide you through the process if you’re a first-time seller. The eBay App makes selling anything incredibly easy – you can even do it right from your new phone. This quick method offers great features like auto-filling information and images, all you have to do is select the proper item, set the condition that it is in and ask for a price. The app can even go so far as suggesting a selling price to you based on previous sales of same or similar items. You can allow people to make you offers, sell your phone outright with the Buy It Now option, or allow the auction-style bidding that eBay was first famous for. The app makes selling things so easy in fact, you might find yourself running around your house snapping photos of stuff you don’t want anymore and listing them for sale.

ebay.com/own/sell/tablet // Sell your old tablet with eBay’s quick guide that drills down every device for you, giving you the specs and suggested price front and center once you’ve determined its condition. Once you set your price, you’re only one click away from listing your tablet on eBay for all to see, and one to buy.

eCycle Best

ecyclebest.com/smartphone // ecyclebest.com/tablet // If you don’t want to deal with having to sell your device to users directly, eCycle Best will buy your smartphone, iPad or tablet from you, refurbish it, or reuse components as replacement parts, then sell it to a new owner for you. They promote environmental awareness through electronics recycling and aim to reduce electronic waste in landfills with their services – this option should appeal to everyone’s environmental conscience! They are a trusted smartdevice buyer since 2002, and pay out either with PayPal or by check. They recycle old, cracked, or otherwise damaged smartphones and tablets of a wide brand range and give you cash for them – they even send you a free box with prepaid shipping.

Smartphone Trade-in

smartphonetradein.com // Boasting over 7 million trade-ins since 2002, they don’t only take a wide range of smartphones but also i-devices, like the iPad and iPod – even iPhones as old as the 3Gs. They ship USPS and FedEx to the US for free for orders of all sizes and value. Everyone wants to get paid fast and they know it – payment is sent within three business days. SpTi is committed to a strict zero landfill policy, helping you and everyone else do your part.


gazelle.com // A reCommerce pioneer, Gazelle has been taking your unwanted devices and finding them new owners since 2008 and have paid out nearly $100 million for items people no longer needed. Mainly a repository to sell i-devices, Gazelle also accepts Android phones, however they take iPads, tablets, iPods and even Apple computers. They trade for cash and offer free shipping for any devices.


maxback.com // An electronics buyback program that pays out cash quickly when you want to sell smartphones, tablets, and even wearables. They resell gently used electronics, but if what you want to sell is mashed up, worry not… damaged or unusable devices are remanufactured or recycled by MaxBack’s parent company Environmental Reclamation Services, Inc. (ERS), an R2 and ISO-14001-certified, reverse-logistics company. ERS has been in business for two decades and is the premier recycler of printer cartridges and small electronics from around the world.

iPad Air 2 & Apple’s Live iPad Event

Visually, the front design hasn't changed much from the gen1 Air, except the button.

i-fanatics had been waiting for this day for a while, at 1:00 p.m. ET/10:00 a.m. PT October 16 2014, people around the world saw the new iPad Air 2, along with some other secrets that Apple had stashed for us. We, along with the Internet world, broke down the core rumors surrounding the Air 2, with the tons of leaked photos online that basically divulged most of them as truths. Even with the event gone you’re probably looking at an actual release date of October 24th – so hold on to your current tablet, and bookmark this page until then!

Sell, donate or give as a hand-me-down… whatever you do, don’t throw your old tech in the garbage, EVER. Electronic waste is a HUGE international problem! Always upgrade responsibly!!!

For those who would rather not mess with the whole selling thing, you can always donate any of your old tech to a charity. You might not make back any money to offset the investment of a new phone, but you get paid in karma knowing that you’ve done a good, selfless thing and helped someone in need. Anything but the trash, please… seriously. Check the links below to find out more about the very real e-Waste Crisis.

Basel Action Network e-waste photographyE-waste awareness photography by the Basel Action Network. Some rights reserved. 
Used under the Creative Commons License.

An introduction to the e-Waste Crisis // e-Stewards A mini-documentary about the world’s largest e-waste dump // BoingBoing.net // This 9 minute short offers a somewhat post-apocalyptic, Fallout-style glimpse into the current state of things. “Agbogbloshie in Accra, Ghana is the world’s largest dump for electronic waste from all over the globe. Meet the teenagers who tend it in this short film, Regolith, directed by Sam Goldwater.”

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