The average smartphone owner upgrades his or her device every two years. That makes for a lot of old devices collecting dust in a drawer somewhere. While you could always try and sell it (usually for a fraction of what you paid), or donate it, there are other options. There are a variety of apps available that will help you breathe some new life into your old Android phone. We will be taking a look at some unique ways to put your old phone to use.
Most folks probably already use their phone as a GPS for their car, but using it frequently can chew up a large chunk of your precious mobile data. Google Maps may be the go-to navigation app, but its reliance on data makes it less than appealing if you’re looking to avoid data charges. Luckily there are a number of navigation apps available that work completely offline, no data required. With excellent options from Nokia and Sygic, all you need is a phone mount and your old Android becomes a dedicated GPS.
If you’re into cycling, then you are probably aware of the multitude of apps that can make your riding life easier. From dedicated GPS and trip planning to tracking your distance, calories burned and more, turning an old phone into a bike computer is a must for any cyclist.
Home Surveillance/Baby Monitor
Who needs expensive security cameras when you have a perfectly good camera on your old cell phone? Keeping an eye out for burglars or watching over your new puppy at work has never been easier. Apps like Alfred and WardenCam can capture both video and audio and deliver it to you remotely via Wi-Fi. These apps even have motion detection capabilities, sending you still images or text notifications when they spot something fishy.
Been on the fence about a Logitech Harmony remote? If your Android device sports an IR blaster, all you need is the AnyMote app. With over 900,000 supported devices, you should have no trouble controlling all of your home entertainment equipment. If your phone doesn’t have an IR blaster, you can still control iTunes, Kodi and more via Wi-Fi.
Gaming Device/MP3 Player
This one seems like a no brainer, but bear with us. Uninstall all of your apps, shut off the Wi-Fi and load your old device full of MP3s. Keep this DIY iPod in your car or bring it with you to the gym for a distraction-free workout fueled by your Rocky soundtrack.
Gaming on Android has come a long way since Flappy Bird. If you consider yourself a gamer, the Google Play store is chock full of games ranging from platformers to puzzlers to shooters. If you’re into retro gaming, you’l be happy to know that console emulation on Android is very good. Grab a controller if you really want to take things to the next level.
Power Scientific Research
Interested in contributing toward the greater good? Consider installing an app that donates your phone’s processing power to scientific research. U.C. Berkeley’s BOINC app allows you to choose between a variety of research projects including AIDS and global warming.
Whether you’re a doomsday prepper or a lover of the outdoors, an old Android device is a must for any survivalist. First grab a first aid app. Then install the Army Survival Guide which covers everything from how to make a shelter to food and water procurement. Any good Boy Scout knows that knowing your knots will definitely come in handy. Since we can’t imagine a world without Wikipedia, you’ll want to grab that, too, all 39 million articles is only 3.6 GB. These are just a few of many, but you’ll probably want to invest in a solar charger for when the apocalypse finally comes.
What do you use your old Android phone for? Let us know in the comments!