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Alexia Sailer

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World Environment Day 2018: Smartphones – too valuable to be thrown out!

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  • A few tips help to extend the life of the smartphone
  • Telekom offers further services for sustainable mobile phone use
  • June 5th is World Environment Day
Smartphone Recycling

Despite all care and caution, it happened then: Display broken, battery at the end. For such cases, or when the smartphone is actually no longer usable, Deutsche Telekom offers a range of services that help to recover valuable raw materials and to protect the environment.

Almost 23 million smartphones were sold last year in Germany alone. The average life of a device is only 18 months, according to the Global E-Waste Monitor 2017. At the same time, the population produced 44.7 million tons of electronic waste worldwide in 2016, only 20 percent of which were officially collected and recycled in 2017. This has consequences for the environment. Therefore, some mobile phone owners are thinking about using their smartphone a bit longer. A couple of tips can help to extend the smartphone’s life.

  • Most important tip: use mobile phone case! The most common reason for the premature end of a device is a broken display.
  • Do not charge the battery overnight: This will permanently recharge the battery to compensate for the smallest charge fluctuations. That breaks the battery down.
  • No sun: Too much heat from sunlight damages the device
  • Do not use a glass cleaner: this will destroy the display
  • Do not store with keys or money: this prevents annoying and ugly scratches
Using-smartphones-sustainably

Second life for the smartphone

Despite all care and caution, it happened then: Display broken, battery at the end. For such cases, or when the smartphone is actually no longer usable, Deutsche Telekom offers a range of services that help to recover valuable raw materials and to protect the environment. After all, smartphones contain metals such as gold, silver, platinum or rare earths. Smartphone owners have the following options for dealing with their unused device:

  1. Repair: In cooperation with the service provider Reparando Telekom offers a mobile phone repair service. Here experts come directly to the office or home and repair the defective device as far as possible.
  2. Sell: Cell phone owners can sell their devices online or in the Telekom shop. Telekom prepares them and sells them.
  3. Donations: Telekom's mobile phone collection center gives second-hand devices a second chance. Telekom donates to non-profit organizations and promotes different projects from the sale and re-use of these devices.

Background: Facts Smartphones

  • Around 22,958,000 smartphones were sold in 2017 in Germany
  • That's an increase of 2091 percent compared to 2007
  • 42 percent of users in Germany swap their smartphone within two years
  • Next to the landfill, the drawer is the more likely terminus. About 80 percent of Germans store at least one unused device there - a total of about 124 million
  • Smartphones contain many substances from conflict regions. Coltan / Tantalum, Tungsten, Tin, Gold
  • The extraction of substances is also associated with environmental pollution

About Deutsche Telekom: Company profile

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Climate and Environment

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