Newest Review: ... recycle them properly - which is a great idea. All you have to do is go onto the website and enter your phone make and model number. env... more
Dosh? Readies? Wonga!
Member Name: Novabug
Advantages: Easy and quick to use. Money back for old phones and good for recycling
Disadvantages: None really, maybe value of some rarer phones could be higher.
There's always a time when we could do with a little extra cash now and then, and whilst there are a plethora of ways to make small amounts of money on-line, one of the quickest ways to generate a nice lump sum is to sell your old mobile phone to one of several mobile phone recycling websites. One of the most high profile is Envirofone, which I have used several times when I bypassed the idea of giving my old mobile away. Here are my thought on my experiences with Envirofone.com
--If it Ain't Broke, Don't Bin It!--
Any of us who have owned a mobile phone for several years always gets to that time when when you want an upgrade for a newer model. Years ago the big four mobile networks would take your old handset back as part of an upgrade deal, but with the countless mobile phone shops offering upgrades and deals, and the return postage involved, this practice died out. So now, after you have your new handset, you are left with the old one to either give away, put away or throw away. This seemed wasteful, and since we live in an era of environmental awareness, mobile phone recycling websites have popped up in abundance. Envirofone is one of the most prominent.
The basic idea is that you send them your old handset to be recycled in a number of ways. If your handset is in fully working order and relatively modern, you will get a cash amount in return, the values ascertained by Envirofone on the website. If your phone is deemed as having no value, you can still send it to Envirofone to do your bit for recycling. The handset are then either refurbished for sale and charity in developing countries, broken down for spare parts or the metals and plastics melted down for regular material recycling. It all sounds good, so what kind of service to Envirofone provide to you as a consumer?
--Site Design and Navigation--
Designed mostly in a light blues and white scheme, the web page layout of Envirofone is surprisingly basic. It's clear, bold and rather straightforward too. The usual links are at the top in an active menu bar, which automatically drops down the sub-menus with a hover of the mouse. Particularly useful and most inportant is the 'Sell My Mobile' menu, which lists all the common popular brands, makes and models for quick reference. There's an FAQ and a section for blogs and additional material, plus information about the company and what they do. At the end of this menu bar is the account login button. Highlighted in the main part of the page is a large search bar, which you can either enter your phone model or IMEI number. Under this is a selection of the most popular phones and highest valued phones. These are typically smartphones like the iPhone, Blackberry and HTC handsets, which is graphically displayed and quick to select. It's all user friendly, all the information you wish to know is at hand without any trouble, and is a nice, uncomplicated site design.
As everything is very clear, as too being aimed at the widest possible market, navigation is equally as simple. Click on or search for your handset, examine the valuation and possible conditions for that phone, and choose whether to proceed with selling it to Envirofone. That's really it! If you do, you will have to set up an account, which will require all the regular personal details like name, address, create a password etc etc... Again, this is a quick process, not long winded and not wanting to take details not necessary for the transaction. Email notification confirms your account and requests to sell a handset. Terms and conditions are laid down while you do this, and there is a guide section that explains the process in detail. The site loads quickly on a average connection speed, and I have never had it freeze on me or require reloading, despite the bits of Flash and other interactive programming used.
--Service and Value--
If you are aware of sites that offer to buy your wears off you quickly and easily, it's normally a given that any money paid will be rather low. Examples would include Music Magpie and Webuyanycar.com. If you were to individually sell an item, via car-boot, ebay, gumtree etc etc, you would get more value. Convenience, it seems, has a price. Envirofone actually gives fair valuations for the handsets out there. Anything older than 2 years will only score you around £10-£30 as a rule of thumb, rare phones get a little more, but I think should get a little more extra for their uniquness. Smartphones or specialist phones (mp3 player type, camera type) that are no older than 2 years are the big winners. Twice I have used Envirofone. Two years ago I got £76 For a Molorola Rkr E8, (an mp3 player phone), and recently sold my old Blackberry Bold 9700 to them for a quite impressive £115. This is better than it sounds too in my case. Both of these phones were free upgrades directly from Orange, so I never spent a penny on them, got over 14 months use out of each, and then sold them for a profit. As Del-boy would say, Luvly Jubbly!
It all works fluidly too, and myself and friends who have used Envirofone have never had problems with them. After you open a free account, choose the phone you have to send them, they send you an addressed postal bag, and you simply post the phone to them. Within 2 or 3 weeks, you will receive a check for the valuation stated, even if the value changes on the site. You can choose to have the money paid directly into your bank account too, I have never done this, but have had reports that this is secure, fine and instant once the phone has been checked. The amount your paid freezes the moment you request a free-post bag. Both times I have done this have been completely trouble free, and I even received the check for my Blackberry within a week! As a service, I cannot fault them, and while your paying in that check into your bank, you can pat yourself on the back too knowing that the phone will be reused or recycled, and not festering in a landfill. It's a case of everyone's a winner. (Well, maybe not to mobile phone manufactures I suppose.)
Of course, you have to do you bit to make sure things go without a hitch. Get the make and model correct, you can check this using the IMEI number. If you send them a handset that doesn't match what you have told them, you will not receive a payout. Make sure the phone is in fully working order and the memory is reset. The latter purely for you own security and piece of mind, the former because they test all phones they receive to make sure they are operational. They do accept damaged handsets too, but you have to tell them beforehand and the payout amount will drop substantially. Post it off quickly is also a good practice. If you do this, everything should run as it should. As a final note, Envirofone will send you email updates to say the phone has been received, tested and the check posted.
It's not often I write about a buyback website with very few negatives. Like I said before, many of these sites where you sell items on can give you poor valuations, and sometimes even have a 'admin' fee. This is not the case with Envirofone. The valuations are pretty much on the button considering how technology depreciates so quickly nowadays, and on a quick comparison with a rival mobile phone recycling site, the values are on average slightly higher too. So ignore the terrible TV advert and just try the site out if your iPhone 4 has been replaced by a 4S. A handy way of combining a constructive way of recycling and getting a bit of cash in the process. Wonga??? Cooooooollll!
Envirofone URL - http://www.envirofone.com
Mr Wongaman Youtube Channel (Envirofone comic TV ads) - http://www.youtube.com/user/MrWongaman
Thanks for Reading. © Novabug
Summary: Money for old phones? Snap their hands off with your old handset!