Upgrading your smartphone or tablet will leave you with a decision: What to do with your old device?
Trading in, donating, or recycling retired gear are popular options, such as passing on a serviceable phone to asharing your wireless carrier account. But you have countless other ways to get more productive use from outdated hardware without spending much money on it. Here are a few ideas to get more help from your demoted device.
Make a Media Machine
Need an extra television in the kitchen or? Your old phone or tablet can increase if you subscribe to a TV provider or . Download your TV provider’s app (like Spectrum cable or Verizon Fios) or your separate service ( , Disney+, Fubo. tv, Netflix, or whatever) and log into your account. Prop up the device near an outlet so it can run on while you watch since chances are good that the old machine has a worn-out battery.
Likewise, parking your old phone in a speaker cradle that also charges gives you a bookshelf Credit…Apple: Even if they have to stay tethered to a charger, old tablets also make good dedicated e-book readers or digital picture frames for photo slide shows.for music and podcasts. Or you can keep the phone connected to its charger and stream music to a nearby wireless . Powered speaker docks can be for around $40, and a wide variety is available. Wirecutter, the product-testing and review , has suggestions for Bluetooth speakers, general audio gear, and those shopping on a budget.
Control Your World
Smart home appliances, music libraries, internet-connected televisions, so why not convert your old phone or tablet into an all-purpose universal remote? Third-party remote apps abound, but many tech companies (Amazon, , Google, LG Electronics, Roku, and Samsung, to name a few) have their programs. Just take a stroll through your for software that matches up with your hardware.
- Credit…Google; Roku
(Apple, which used to have a stand-alone Remote app, folded theremote software into the operating system in iOS 12 but still has an iTunes Remote app for iPhone/iPad users to control their iTunes music collections. Stored on Macs and PCs.) And even if you haven’t lost the tiny stick remote that came with your set-top streamer yet, the onscreen keyboard included with most apps makes it easier to type in passwords.
Get Your Game On
Depending on the processor and battery state, dedicating your oldto give it extra life. Wiping off all the old data to start afresh gives you more room to download and .
Playing old games on old phones may have a nostalgic appeal, and you can find many classics converted for mobile. And you’re not limited to stand-alone games. Stadia can run on many mobile devices, and you can beam your games (and another video) to the big screen if you’re using the Google Chromecast game mode or the AirPlay technology that Apple devices use to share the screen on Apple TV.
If tapping a touch screen has never been your idea of serious gaming, consider snapping your oldthat brings physical buttons, the standard D-Pad, and thumbsticks to the gaming experience: the ($80 to $100) or Backbone One ($100) options.
Entertain and Educate
If you’ve decided that your child can handle a hand-me-down phone or tablet for, take a moment to do a little setup to protect both of you. Visit the settings first.
- Credit…Left, Google; right, Apple.
Next, create an account for the child and configure the parental controls for screen time, app purchases, and.
- Credit…Google; NASA
If the(and can hold a charge for an hour or so), you can also use it to teach photography fundamentals. Loading up the child’s account with a prepaid gift card can impart money-management skills. And if the device’s old battery conks out after an hour, you can teach .