It might sound vaguely barbaric, but when you get down to fundamental levels, people want to be rewarded for their good behavior. And as they grow older, they want to be rewarded with something better than gold stars and lollipops.
eRecyclingCorps is setting out to be the middle man between the big wireless retailers and the consumer. Rather than wastefully tossing old wireless devices in a landfill, consumers can recycle their old phones and give them new life. It’s not a new idea, sure – but eRecyclingCorps found a way to make wireless device reuse attractive to all parties involved.
But is there such a thing as a ‘win, win, win scenario?’
Company CEO David Edmondson, former CEO of Radio Shack, thinks so. It works like this – First, a consumer brings in their used, outdated phone and receives credit based on the phone’s condition and trade-in value, assessed by a carrier’s in-store representative. They can then use that credit toward a new device immediately – the reward.
“Of course, we like to think people who trade in their phones get other rewards too, such as the happiness that comes with keeping e-waste out of landfills, but that can be markedly harder to measure,” Edmondson says.
Since only ten percent of wireless devices are recycled properly, according to the EPA, a program like eRecyclingCorps could be just the idea that makes that number rise.
Program-supporting carriers like Sprint and Verizon can then turn around and sell the old device for profit. The secondhand consumer wins by being able to afford the used phone on-the-cheap. eRecyclingCorps estimates that they’ll help facilitate five million trade ins-in 2012.
The program was started by Edmondson and former CEO of Sprint PCS Ron LeMay with the ever-changing electronics consumer in mind, Edmondson says. Finicky tech-heads can get their bit-sized fix guilt free while others benefit.
“eRecyclingCorps refurbishes and renews the devices to stringent standards and resells them, often in developing countries, or if they can’t be reused, recycles them safely,” Edmondson says. “Essentially, eRecyclingCorps extends the lifecycle of wireless devices and eliminates them being put in the garbage.”