Smartphones are constantly evolving to the point where they are no longer useful or relevant. The only problem is that you can not just throw away your old smartphone. Instead, you have to figure out how to reuse them, so they help your business and the environment.

In this article, we will talk about how to reuse an old smartphone and turn it into a useful device.

How to Best Reuse Your Old Smartphone
Image: SeekingAlpha

15 Cool Things to Do With Old Smartphones

Many people have two or more smartphones. And often, the old one just sits around collecting dust. If you have an unused smartphone, be it an iPhone or an Android phone, there are many cool things you can do with old phones that will make them useful again.

Turn Your Old Smartphone Into a Security Camera

Use phone as security camera
Image: BizTechMagazine

One of the best ways to upcycle your old smartphone (yes, that’s a legit term) is to turn it into a surveillance camera. To do this, you can download an app like Alfred Home Security Camera, Wyze (Android, iOS) or AtHome Camera.

With these apps, you can use your old phone as a webcam or a baby monitor. You can also set up motion detection to record when something moves in front of the camera.

Let’s see how you can turn your old phone into a security camera with Alfred.

How to Turn Old Smartphone Into CCTV with Alfred?

  • First, install Alfred on both your old and new phones. On the old phone, sign in with the same Google account you used to sign up for Alfred.
  • Select camera mode on your old smartphone and view mode on the other smartphone you have with you.
    old phone as security camera
    Image: Alfred

That’s it! Now you can use your old phone as a security camera. Just mount your old smartphone somewhere high up in the room, so it has a good view of the whole room.

You can also buy a wide-angle lens for phone camera to get an even better view.

Use an Old Phone as a Dedicated Music Player

Use smartphone as music player
Image: Louder

If you love music, you can use your old phone as a music-only player. Just load your phone with all your favorite songs and plug it into a good pair of speakers.

You can also use apps like Spotify, Pandora, or YouTube Music to stream music from the Internet.

And if you want to save some money, you can use your old phone as a jukebox. Just plug it into a TV or a projector and control the music playback with your phone.

Turn Old Smartphone Into a Remote Control

Use smartphone as remote control
Image: Freepik

You can also use your old phone as a remote control. Just download an app like Unified Remote, Universal TV Remote, or Galaxy Universal Remote. These apps use built-in infrared sensors to turn your phone into a remote control.

With these apps, you can control various things like your computer, TV, media player, and more.

You can also use your old phone as a remote for your smart home devices. Just download the app for your smart home devices and control them with your phone.

For example, you can use the Amazon Alexa app to control your Amazon Echo devices.

Use Old Phone as a GPS Tracker

Use smartphone as GPS tracker
Image: GQ

Most smartphones these days are equipped with GPS. And you can use this feature to your advantage. Just install a GPS tracking app like Life360, My Family GPS Tracker, or Glympse on your old phone.

With these apps, you can track the location of your kids, family members, or even your pets.

Similarly, you can use your old smartphone as a navigator in your car. Just download a navigation app like Waze or Google Maps and use your phone as a GPS tracker.

Use Old Android Phone as a DashCam

Use old phone as dashcam

You can use your old phone as a dashcam if you’re a driver. Just download a dashcam app like DailyRoads Voyager, AutoGuard BlackBox, or Droid Dashcam.

With these apps, you can record your drive and even save video footage.

You can also use your old phone as a baby monitor in the car. Just download a baby monitor app like Baby Monitor 3G, Dormi, or Cloud Baby Monitor.

These apps use your phone’s camera to monitor your baby in the car.

Play Games on Old Cell Phones

Use smartphone for gaming
Image: Forbes

If you’re a gamer, you can use your old cell phone as a portable gaming device. Just install some games on your phone and connect it to a TV or projector. And enjoy gaming on a big screen!

Although you’ll need a high-end device for most games, some games run smoothly on lower-end devices. For example, you can play games like Asphalt 8, Temple Run 2, or Fruit Ninja on most old smartphones.

You can also use your old phone as an emulator for PC games. Just download an app like Gamepad Keyboard, Octopus, or Droid4X and use your phone as a game emulator.

Use Smartphone as a Media Server

Use smartphone for media

If you have lots of movies and TV shows stored on your computer, you can use your old phone as a media server. Just download an app like Plex or Kodi and use your phone to stream media from your computer to your TV.

You can also use apps like Emby or PlayOn to stream media from the Internet.

And if you want to save some money, you can use your old phone as a DVR. Just connect your phone to a TV or projector and use an app like Channels DVR, or TiVo, to record live TV.

Use Old Phone as VR Headset

Use smartphone for VR headset
Image: Twitter/Verizon Ventures

If you have a Google Cardboard, you can use your old phone as a VR headset. Just download a VR app like Google Earth VR or Cardboard Camera, and use your phone to experience virtual reality. You can easily buy dedicated VR goggles for $20-30 on Amazon.

You can also use your old phone as a 3D viewer. Just download a 3D viewing app like VRSE or within and use your phone to view 3D content.

You can also use your old phone as a 360-degree camera. Just download a 360-degree camera app like Google Street View or Panorama 360 Camera (Android, iOS), and take panoramic photos and videos with your phone.

Use Old Smartphones as Google Home

Use smartphone for smart home
Image: Seekingalpha

Another way to use your old phone is to turn it into a Google Home. You don’t have to spend $42+ on a Google Home when you can use your old phone for free.

Just mount the phone on a stand and set up “Ok Google Detection.” This will allow you to use your phone as a Google Home. You can ask it questions, set alarms, and even play music. To do this, simply open the Google app on your phone and go to Settings > Language > “Ok Google Detection“. Also, make sure your phone is plugged into a power source.

Related: 50+ Best Google Assistant Commands

Use Old Phone With a Nightstand

Use smartphone with nightstand as a live photo frame

Your old smartphone may just be the best thing you can have on your nightstand with a charger. And it can serve different purposes, such as:

  • Alarm Clock: You can use your old phone as an alarm clock. Just download a clock app like Alarm Clock Xtreme, Sleep as Android, and Voice Snooze Alarm which lets you put your ringing alarm clock to snooze mode by voice command.
  • Clock Radio: With apps like TuneIn radio, you can use use your old phone as a clock radio. You can listen to your favorite radio stations and even let them wake you up. TuneIn radio also acts as an alarm clock and has a sleep timer.
  • E-Reader: With an e-reader app like Kindle or Nook, you can use your old phone as an e-reader. You can read your favorite books on your phone and even take them with you wherever you go.
  • Live Photo Frame: Your old smartphone can be a great way to display your favorite photos. Just download a photo frame app like Fotoo (Android) or LiveFrame (iOS), and use your phone to display your favorite photos. It’s even a better idea for old tablets and iPads.
  • Calendar: Your old smartphone can be a great way to keep track of your schedule. Just download a calendar app like Calendar Live, and use your phone to keep track of your upcoming events.

Use Old Phones As Backup Storage

Use smartphone for backup storage
Image: Otosection

If your old smartphone has a microSD card slot or large built-in storage, you can use it as backup storage. Just download a file manager app like ES File Explorer, and use your phone to store all your, then you can use it as backup storage. You can also buy a microSD card and use it to store all your photos, videos, and files.

Use It as a Backup Phone

Use smartphone as backup phone
Image: TelecomAsia

You can use your old phone as a backup phone if you have a second phone. That way, if your main phone is broken or lost, you still have a working phone.

You can also use your old phone as a spare phone when you travel. You can use your spare phone if your main phone gets broken or lost. Just make sure it is always fully charged and kept in a safe place.

Use Old Phone as a WiFi Hotspot

Use smartphone as wifi hotspot
Image: Citynews.ca

One of the best ways to use your old phone is to use it as a Wi-Fi hotspot. With this, you can connect your other devices to the Internet and use them anywhere. To do this, just go to Settings > Network & internet > Hotspot & tethering. Then, turn on the “Mobile hotspot” and “USB tethering” options.

Related: How to Use Android Phone as a Wi-Fi Hotspot

Use Old Phone as a Webcam

Use smartphone as webcam
Image: Business.com

Smartphones come with a great camera, and you can use your old phone as a webcam. Just download a webcam app like DroidCam or IP Webcam, and use your phone to take pictures and videos.

Hand It Down to Kids

Smartphone for kids
Image: thesun.co.uk

If you don’t want to use your old cell phone anymore, you can give it to your children. They can use it to play games, listen to music, and even watch videos. Just make sure you delete all personal data from the phone before you pass it on.

Even better? Please give it to a charity.

Your Old Phone Is Still a Smartphone

There are many ways to use your old smartphone. You can use it as backup storage, a backup phone, a webcam, or even give it to your kids. All of these are great ways to upcycle your old phone. There are many uses for your old phone, so go ahead and get creative. Who knows, you might even find a new use for your old phone that we hadn’t thought of. So, what’re you waiting for? Get started today and find new uses for your old smartphone.

FAQs About How To Reuse Old Smartphone

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There are many apps that can help you use your old smartphone. Some of the best include:

Applications to turn your smartphone to night clock:

There are some other great options that you can find in the app store.

Yes, you can use your old smartphone as a home security camera. There are many apps that will allow you to do this, such as:

Download and install any one of the above-mentioned apps and follow the instruction to set up your own home security camera.

This depends on the make, model and condition of the phone. In general, an old smartphone is worth less than a new one. However, there are some exceptions. For example, a limited edition or rare feature phone may be worth more than a standard model. Or if you buy a high-end flagship from a few years ago, it's probably still worth quite a bit. It really depends on the phone in question.

When you are ready to sell your old smartphone, you should clean it from all personal data. To do this, you can either reset it to factory settings or use a special wipe program. Factory reset is usually the best option, as it completely erases the phone. However, if you are worried that someone might recover your data, you can use a tool like Dr.Fone - Data Eraser to wipe the phone.

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