The Upgrade Game

In this world of electronics we are in a constant state of upgrade. If I try to recall each time I have upgraded a laptop, camera, or smartphone I would probably have a hard time remembering them all. But that’s the way it is. Something better is always on the horizon. As soon as we oogle over the great new Samsung Galaxy smartphone, the creators are already in their workshops discussing how to improve on it for the next version.

But what do you do with your old devices? There are many things that you can do. A lot of people gift them to their children, spouses, or other relatives. This option can have drawbacks. Gifting a device means that you become the support person for that device. Whenever they have questions, they will ask you. LOL! Now, if you do not mind then that’s fine. And of course everyone loves being gifted a new device to play with. Making them happy will make you smile. 🙂

However, if you need a few extra bucks selling your device is the best option. Selling a device online means that you have to list it, pack it up, and ship it. This can sometimes be a hassle. I know I hate visiting the post office. 🙂 It can also involve high fees. Selling your devices on local sites can be risky. You have to meet with the person to make the exchange. And selling it on your own can take time while as you figure out how to get the word out.

What is ecoATM?


ecoATM is a unique kiosk that resembles an ATM machine. You visit it, insert your device, and receive cash on the spot. Earth Day just passed. More people are trying to live green, so this option will appeal to many.


From the website: ecoATM is the world’s first automated eWaste recycling station. That’s a fancy way of saying that we’re a friendly green machine looking to pay cash for the responsible recycling of your old cell phones, MP3 players and tablets. Sell your phone or other device by placing it in the ecoATM kiosk, and we’ll tell you how much it’s worth. What happens next? You get instant cash. With ecoATM kiosks all over the country, and with your help, we’re working hard to solve the eWaste problem facing our planet.

How it Works

The process could not be more simple. Check out the ecoATM website to find a kiosk in your area. Here in the Chicago area there are many kiosks popping up all over.

  • Chicago Ridge Mall
  • Fox Valley Mall, Aurora
  • Golf Mill Shopping Center, Niles
  • Gurnee Mills Shopping Center
  • Hawthorn Mall, Vernon Hills
  • Orland Square Shopping Center, Orland Park
  • Lincolnwood Town Center
  • Louis Joliet Mall, Joliet
  • Northfield Square Mall, Bourbonnais
  • River Oaks Center, Calumet City
  • Southlake Mall, Schererville, Ind.
  • Spring Hill Mall, West Dundee
  • Stratford Square Mall, Bloomingdale
  • Woodfield Mall, Schaumburg
  • Yorktown Shopping Center, Lombard

None of those is very close to me (I live in the boonies. LOL!). However, the next time I find myself in the area of any of those malls I will definitely be looking to check out an ecoATM kiosk.

Once you find your closest location, take your device to the kiosk, insert it, decide if you want to accept the offer, and walk away with cash!

The inspection process is really the coolest thing that I have ever seen. It uses an easily removal tracking sticker, built-in charge/sync cable, and several cameras to get the job done. The machine scans your device using infrared technology to inspect the condition of your device. It’s all automated and electronic.

There is even protection against thieves. The kiosk requires you to scan your driver’s license, it takes a photo, and it scans a thumbprint. Don’t worry.. this info is never shared with spammers. It is only accessed if the device that you sold to ecoATM is reported stolen.

Check out the video below to see how it works.


You can also insert your device specs on the ecoATM website for an estimate of what your device is worth. For example, I entered in my Samsung Galaxy S4 and was told that I would get up to $140.  The website even offers tips on preparing your device for recycling. When entering in information on my Apple iPod Touch I was presented with this tip:


This is definitely an interesting way to recycle devices. The next time you are thinking about selling one of your old devices, visit an ecoATM kiosk! Find one near you today!


Disclosure: This post is sponsored by ecoATM. All opinions are my own.