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Don't sell or trade your old iPhone yet. 8 ways to give a new life to the home



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After upgrading to a new iPhone, you have a decision: what to do with the old one?


Patrick Holland / CNET

When it comes time to upgrade to a new phone, you are faced with a decision. Do you trade it in and get a discount, or do you stick to it? I can't fault you if you want to get a discount on a new phone, especially on the already affordable iPhone SE . That said, don't be so quick to dump your old phone.

Even with only Wi-Fi access and no cellular connection, your old iPhone ($ 699 from Apple) can still be useful. For example, you can program it as a spare Apple TV ($ 179 at Apple) remote, or reuse it as a security camera to keep an eye on your front door.

Before using your old phone again, I recommend that you reset it to factory settings ( Settings > General > Reset ) and set it up as a new device. You should also turn off all the features you don't use like iMessage to prevent your messages from making your phone sound and vibrate constantly.

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Here are eight great, cheap, or even free options for your old iPhone.

An Inexpensive Security Camera

Keep an eye on your porch or the side of your house by turning your old iPhone into a security camera. You will need some extra equipment such as a mount or tripod, a wide angle lens and an extra charger, but you shouldn't have to spend a lot to get it up and running.

Read our guide to get the security camera app called Alfred. Once that is done, you can check in anywhere at your home.

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Turn your phone into a security camera.


Colin McDonald / CNET

Make the Most of Apple Arcade

Instead of draining your phone's battery and constantly receiving notifications while you or your kids try to beat a new game, use your old iPhone as a dedicated gaming device. Of course, the screen is not as big as a Nintendo Switch for example, but you will still love it. And with Apple Arcade's $ 5 per month subscription
hours of gaming await you to access the full game catalog.

Even if you don't have an Apple Arcade subscription, there are tons of free games from Fortnite to Hearthstone to Blackbox.

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There are plenty of great games waiting for you.


Angela Lang / CNET

Turn Your Old iPhone Into a Special FaceTime or Zoom Hub

While most of us practice social distance during the coronavirus pandemic, routine video calls using FaceTime or Zoom are the new norm. Keep your old iPhone charged and in a central location, so you and your family always have a ready video calling device. This is especially useful if you have children who often want to call family or friends. It gives them the freedom to make calls and the peace of mind that nothing will happen to your new phone.

Or if you use Zoom to participate in training classes whether it is on an exercise bike or yoga, you can mirror your screen on your big screen TV make it easier to follow.

You now have a spare Apple TV remote

Do you have an Apple TV? Then you know how downright frustrating (and easy) it is to lose the Apple TV remote. It happens to me almost every day. Do you know what is harder to lose? An iPhone. At least in theory.

Install the Apple TV Remote app and use your iPhone to control your Apple TV. One drawback, however, is that the battery doesn't last nearly as long as the Apple TV remote. Although, if you misplace it, at least you can use the Find My app to find it .

Even if you don't have an Apple TV, you can use your old phone as a remote control for Roku or Fire TV streaming boxes with the right app.

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Put your iPhone, iPad or Mac screen on your TV with AirPlay.


Jason Cipriani / CNET

Use it as a cheaper HomePod

Instead of spending $ 300 on Apple & # 39; s HomePod smart speaker use your old phone as an always-on "Hey Siri" device . Think of it as Apple's version of an Amazon Echo but with Siri. On the phone, go to Settings > Siri & Search and make sure Listen if "Hey Siri" is enabled.

When the phone is plugged in, you can ask Siri for the weather, control accessories connected with HomeKit or play music. The Hey Siri feature has been trained to respond to your voice only, so if a family member or roommate wants to use it, they must hold down the Home button or press the side button to open Siri.

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"Hey Siri" wakes up your iPhone and lets you ask questions or give commands.


Jason Cipriani / CNET

Give it to another family member, such as your children or parent.

Have you been on the fence to get a phone for your child? Pass on your old phone. It has already been paid for and if they eventually crack the screen or ruin the battery, you won't have hundreds of dollars left.

If you follow this route, make sure you set Apple's screen time tool on your phone and your child's phone so you can keep track of which apps they use and when. You can even limit who they can talk to. It's pretty cool.

Children already have a telephone? Give it to an older parent or family member. They can then use it as a phone or, if nothing else, a dedicated FaceTime device to keep in touch.

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Because it's an old phone, that's exactly why you should trust a child with it.


James Martin / CNET

Make It Your Emergency Phone

If you decide to repurpose your old phone, you will constantly have a spare phone in case yours gets broken, lost or stolen. With Apple Stores closed, it is not possible to take a cracked screen phone for repair . You will probably have to send it somewhere for repair, which means you will be without a phone for a few days.

It may be worth keeping your old phone alone for this reason.

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Angela Lang / CNET

Donate your old phone to make it a new phone for someone in need.

There are several organizations that accept donations from old phones to achieve different goals. For example, the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence helps victims and survivors of domestic violence. Do you want to help foreign troops keep in touch with their loved ones? View mobile phones for soldiers.

Those are just two of many organizations that accept old phones and gadgets and either reuse them or sell them and use the proceeds for those in need. Do you want to find a local place to donate? Call your local YWCA or homeless shelter and ask if they accept donations.

It is important to make sure that factory reset your phone before sending or returning it. Do that by going to Settings > General > Reset > Clear all content and settings .

Now that you know what to do with your old phone, take a few minutes to ensure that your new iPhone is properly set up and working . From mastering iOS 13 to learning the best hidden features to for smooth transfer process we are here to help.

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Donating your old phone is a great way to help others.


Gabriel Sama / CNET


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