Things To Do With That Obsolete iPhone

What Pixar needs to do is make a movie called iPhone Story, about what your outmoded past iPhones do when you’re not looking and how they react to the annual, Buzz Lightyear-like newcomers.

Tom’s List provides some notes for a potential script if anyone wants to jump on the project. Here are eight things you can do with those old iPhones after you disconnect them:

* WiFi-only phones.

* Mini spare hard drives.

* A back-up phone in case the new one breaks.

*A universal remote.

* A music and movie library for your home theater.

* A night stand webcam.

* A handheld game console.

* Your experimental guinea pig.

Multiple iPhone buyers, what do you do with your extras?

9 New Uses For Your Old iPhone
[Tom’s Guide via Wise Bread]


Edit Your Comment

  1. JoeDawson says:

    Seriously, good ideas…. but one neglects to remember that Ipod Touches/Iphones CANNOT be put into disk mode like standard IPODS

  2. JohnDeere says:

    im thinking of getting an ipad just to make a universal remote. ohh and a tv guide.

  3. Gregg Araki Rocks My World says:

    Just try to find a reputable recycling place. One that won’t ship them to China or Nigeria where they are taken apart by hand and expose people to toxins.

  4. Thyme for an edit button says:

    Night stand webcam, huh?

    I know what you’re making at home.

    • BuyerOfGoods3 says:

      …honey, is that your iPhones camera on? ….No, no no..That’s my old one; my new one is over — there.
      Seriously…night stand web cam? I must be getting old.

  5. Lividity says:

    Sell them on ebay. Always seems to be a market for the last gen iPhone.

    • pecan 3.14159265 says:

      If you’re not going to use it, see how much it’ll fetch on Gazelle.

    • UCLAri: Allergy Sufferer says:

      This is the most logical solution. I old my old original iPhone for like $200 not too long ago.

      They’re good devices despite the anti-Apple trolls and there’s still a large market for them used.

  6. GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

    I’ve been wanting an iPhone mostly because it has true GPS unlike what the iPod Touch has, and I would like to WarDrive with it, which I can’t really do with my iPod Touch.

    That said, the night stand webcam sounds like I good idea. I need a 5th cam…

  7. Hooray4Zoidberg says:

    I’d prefer to sell mine for a few hundred dollars there is still plenty of demand. These phones are far from obsolete, they’re just no longer cutting edge.

  8. ZJM says:

    I have traded mine in to a local electronics “pawn shop”-like place called C.e.X. and got 270 bucks for the 1st gen (right before the 3GS came out) and 176 for the 3G (after the iPhone 4 came out). Its not so bad when you pay for the new one with the old ones.

  9. staralfur says:

    jailbreak, unlock, sell on craigslist… or save for use as phone for traveling overseas.

  10. salviati says:

    After upgrading to a CDMA Android phone, my old iPhone 3G will be my international travel phone (wifi). I can use Skype for WiFi calls, and perhaps use an international SIM card if I’ll be traveling a while. If only there were a way to download sections of Google Maps (for a whole city) that would interact with the still-functional GPS.

  11. XianZhuXuande says:


  12. ElleAnn says:
  13. Extractor says:

    Deactivated cell phones will still dial 911. When I travel I keep a deactivated one in case i need 911 at which point the phone is locked until emergency arrives. I use the other one while waiting for 911 to arrive to make arrangements such as when I totaled my winter wreck in February 08. Everyone please remember to delete everything when your phone is deactivated. A lot of these “recycled” phones contain peoples entire contact list with their phone numbers. Now everyone has a reason not to donate your cell phones.

  14. eccsame says:

    How nice it is that we live in a society where we can afford to think on such ponderables as what to do with our less-than-five-year-old electronics.
    Personally, I wish I could get one of those old cell phones that came with a portable, shoulder strap batteries the size of a car battery. The only problem is that I don’t think you can play “Snake” on them.

  15. humphrmi says:

    I was going to say, the iPhone 1 is hardly obsolete, but several beat me to it…

  16. coren says:

    Give it to Coren, because he needs new technology.

  17. shadypeeks says:

    Give it to me. You can find me on the www

  18. YouDidWhatNow? says:

    The best thing to do with any iPhone, old or new, is to plop it on the ground in front of a bunch of Apple fanbois and stomp on it. Good for hours of crying, gnashing of teeth, beating of breasts, that sort of thing. Good times!

    • Cyniconvention says:

      I recall, now a fair few years ago, when the Xbox 360 first came out, how one dude was first in line. He bought his device, wemt outside to where the line of enthusiastic gamers were wating, and beat it with a bat.

      Some of those people waiting in line retaliated in turn, beating up the guy until he had to be taken to the hospital.

      And those were just XBOX fanboys…

  19. 50ae says:

    I just put all the phone and texting apps in their own little window away from all the games and my daughter uses it as an iPod Touch. I also have an iPod touch so both my daughters can play games in the back seat of the car thus preventing fights on long car drives and my new iPhone 4 can be plugged in playing what I want over the radio instead of in the back getting it’s battery drained down.

  20. Eat The Rich -They are fat and succulent says:

    How bout hang on to it and use it until Steve Jobs pulls his egotistical head out of his everloving backside and actually fixes all the issues with the new phone?

    I refuse to trade in my perfectly functioning 3g for a half baked pile of crap, no matter how “Magical” and “Lifechanging” it may be. Heck, I have only had the thing for 18 months or so.

    So I wait another 9 months till A) The price drops B) They actually fix all the problems and C) Stop blaming the consumer for their engineering screw ups.

    end rant?

    • JonBoy470 says:

      The price will drop in 11 months, in the first week of June, 2011, when Steve gets on the podium at the World Wide Developers’ Conference, announces iPhone 5 (or 4G, or whatever they’ll call it) and announces that the iPhone 4 will soldier on with a “new” 8GB version that only comes in black and retails for $99.

      • Eat The Rich -They are fat and succulent says:

        Precisely my point. I understand marketing and product cycling, but Apple really pushes the envelope.

      • Eat The Rich -They are fat and succulent says:

        And perhaps he will give a tutorial on how to properly hold a phone.

    • Fafaflunkie Plays His World's Smallest Violin For You says:

      Maybe this will get Chairman Jobs’ nose out of his pompous derriere:

      Maybe a year or so later, after all those “I-just-had-to-wait-4-hours-in-line-at-the-Apple-store-and-be-first-to-hand-my-Dear-Leader-another-$300-and-get-raped-in-a-contract-extension” types get their settlement offer of 10% off the bumper, the iPhone 5 will be out, making them head back to the lineup to get another…er…prostate exam, all forgetting this ever happened, and the Dear Leader will rake in another billion or so from them.

      • Fafaflunkie Plays His World's Smallest Violin For You says:

        Err, forgive that running sentence, folks.

        “Me flunk English? That’s unpossible!” –Ralph Wiggum.

  21. mike_bruns_99 says:
  22. NTC-Brendan says:

    Return to the store for a refund (if under 30 days).

  23. DanGarion says:

    I always thought selling it was the best option since even older models still work, and are worth a couple hundred… But what do I know…

  24. Coalpepper says:

    I’ve been hoping to find an iPhone at a reasonable price to make it easier to enter data on one of my jobs, that or a handheld of some sort that has Wi-Fi.

  25. ninram says:

    Why not send it in to a place like

    I looked into selling my old iPhone 3G last month and they were offering $126

  26. leprofie says:

    sold mine to for $188

  27. chris_d says:

    obsolete? hey, at least you with the 2G you can make calls when you’re holding it!

    I say just keep using it (don’t get the new one) and save yourself some money. And cut down on the toxic e-waste.

  28. COBBCITY says:

    Um, my old phones are always sold on eBay and I am stunned at how much I get for them. (Note: Always stash the original box, manuals and other stuff somewhere so you can sell it with everything it came with).

  29. Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

    We’ve always just donated old cell phones to the local domestic violence shelter. I’m assuming they’d take an old iPhone. There are also numerous organizations that take old cell phones (for parts or refurbishing and selling them) and donate the proceeds to give calling cards to deployed soldiers and their families.

  30. econobiker says:

    Can you get an iphone for $25 now? If so then I am wanting one now. Or did the phone carriers outmode it enough to be worthless?

  31. SoFlaSnowMan says:

    My wife sold her iPhone 1 here:

  32. giax says:

    My main phone is one of those “obsolete” first iPhones out there. I got it when my other half upgraded his to the next model, and now that he is thinking again about upgrading to iPhone 4G, I’ll be again on the line for getting his old phone.
    That leaves me the older iPhone…

    I’m simply going to give it to my sister, or if she won’t be planning to use it, to a friend.
    The phone works perfect, and I’m not talking about the old skool phone functions but all iPhone apps too.

    Seriously. I’ve spent enough money on mobile phones since 1995. I haven’t bought one in over five years, and even then I had some of his old phones. And I generally hate phones so I rarely use mine for calling. Old iPhone and AT&T prepay keeps me happy (and for games etc I go with wifi).

    If your old iPhone works, give it to someone. Not everyone can afford to buy a new one, or if they can afford prefer one. An iPhone is best used as a iPhone will it works.