BOSTON (CBS) – When you buy a new smartphone, you may end up leaving your old one in a drawer but now there is a new option that can actually make you money.
A California company is giving out instant cash for old phones and locations are popping up across New England, including ones at The CambridgeSide Galleria and the Liberty Tree and Burlington malls.
Tom Tullie, CEO of the “ecoATM” says this isn’t your typical money machine. You place your old device inside the chamber, the system will close on it and identify what type of phone it is and come up with a price.
Tullie says users can get more than $200 for some of the latest models. So far, he has 181 kiosks across the country.
Handheld recycling is quickly turning into a big business. Analysts at Compass Intelligence, based in A.Z., estimate there are 278 million deactivated or idle phones in the country right now. Only 20% of those phones are recycled.
ecoATM kiosks encourage users to completely erase the data from their devices before selling them. The company actually does their own final data wipe before recycling the phone.
As for concern about stolen items, users must scan a photo ID and be digitally finger printed before the phones are sent off to be refurbished of recycled.
For the location of an ecoATM near you, check out their Website.