Reusing That Old Smartphone

SmartphoneNew mobile phones are coming out all the time. Apple, Android, and Windows phones are constantly being upgraded and improved and released. Many people have mobile plans that allow them to upgrade their phone every two years, or for an added monthly fee, whenever they want. Once you decide to upgrade your phone, you may be stuck with a seemingly simple question: “What do I do with my old smartphone?”

There are several programs out there where you can trade in your old phone for credit toward a new one, or for straight up cash. But, if you’re not ready to part with your mobile device just yet, there are several ways you can repurpose it. You can essentially turn your phone into a mini tablet. First off, though, is you need to disable its cellular transmission functions. On an iPhone, go to Settings and then Cellular. With Android, swipe down your notifications bar, then look for and disable Mobile Data. Some older Android phones may have it listed under Settings, Wireless and Network, Mobile Networks, then turn off Use Packet Data. With a Windows phone, go to Settings, then Cellular. Turn Data Connection off, and set Limited Wi-Fi Connectivity to Do not use cellular data. If your phone allows you to use Wi-Fi in Airplane mode, you can also set it to that.

Now that the battery eating cellular functions are offline, you can repurpose it. If you want to have it as a dedicated entertainment device, load it up with digital movies, music, and games, and download streaming apps like Youtube or Netflix. There are even apps and peripherals that can turn your phone into a television remote. If you have children, a phone loaded with free offline games can be a parent’s best friend during long car rides.

Even with the network functions disabled, you can still use your phone as a GPS with free offline maps from NavFree USA and Google. Or use it to house all your favorite recipes and exercise your culinary prowess on the go. Or use it as a portable alarm clock. There are some free apps out there like Alarm Clock Xtreme that change your normal alarm to one that gets your brain fired up in order to disable the alarm.

Finally, you can repurpose your phone to be a phone. That’s right: with apps like Skype, you can make free Wi-Fi calls and messages to people without needing to use any actual airtime. If you have an unlocked phone, you can use it as a prepaid phone when travelling to prevent yourself from losing your normal phone. Just purchase and install a prepaid SIM card, and you’re good to go!

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