Published on October 31st, 2011 | by Priti Ambani3
EcoATM Makes Electronic Waste Management Easy and Profitable
Ever wondered how to recycle your old cellphones or other home electronics, without the hassle, while making some money out of it? You are not alone. According to the Consumer Electronics Association, the average U.S. household now owns 26 different consumer electronic devices for a staggering total of nearly 3 billion devices in all, many of which are no longer in use.
Almost all consumer electronics contain toxic materials such as lead, mercury, arsenic and a broad variety of other materials that pose a threat to the environment and health. Now multiple these hazards by 3 billion! Concerned now?
The e-Waste challenge is three-fold:
- Extend device usage to end-of-life
- Safely mine existing e-Waste for materials
- Design new devices with planned reclamation using reclaimed materials where possible.
ecoATM, is an award-winning San Diego start-up known for its commitment to the environment and its innovative kiosks that buy-back and recycle consumer electronics.
It is the first and only company to create an automated self-serve kiosk system that uses patented, advanced machine vision, electronic diagnostics, and artificial intelligence to evaluate and buy-back used electronics directly from consumers for cash or store credit. At the ecoATM’s eCycling station, the kiosk:
- Electronically and/or visually inspects virtually any consumer electronic device
- It connects consumers in real-time with a broad worldwide secondary market to ensure best pricing, and
- Pays consumers immediately in cash and/or store credit, and
- Automatically administers trade-in / trade-up promotions for retailers and manufacturers.
The Electronic Waste Management Business Model
The ecoATM is a smart business model that is both profitable and resourceful.
The Kiosk scans your old phone for model and condition, calculates how much it would fetch from a reseller, then pays 50% to 80% of that value on the spot. Gently used electronics that account for 70% of ecoATM revenue are sold to middlemen that resell phones on sites like Overstock and eBay. Scuffed up phones are sold to refurbish-ers that fix and resell to carriers in the developing world, regional American carriers, or insurance companies. Phones that are Totally Busted are prepped and shipped to smelters, who salvage precious metals–gold, platinum, silver–for use in new electronics.
Benefits to Retailers with ecoATM’s
- The eCycling Station is set up completely free.
- Redemption dollars from the trade-in can be spent in stores.
- No store staff or management required for promotion or transaction.
- Automated e-Waste reporting with ecoATM compliance expertise.
Does Your City Have an ecoATM?
Right now the ecoATM facilities are available in California, Nebraska and Washington, with plans to expand to other areas nationally in 2011 Q4.
Want to learn more about the program. Read their FAQ page and check the locator to find one near you. ecoATM also offers an easy corporate phone recycling program for companies interested in responsible e-waste management!