Study: Companies hoarding 12m unused mobile and tablet devices



A new study finds that 70% of companies would like to be “greener” but don’t know how to handle their electronic waste, resulting in organisations holding onto more than 11.8 million unused mobile and tablet devices on average.

The survey, conducted by 3Gem Research & Insights of 500 Senior Managers responsible for IT decision-making in UK organisations of 10 or more employees, shows 76% of firms say they need to be more responsible with disposing of their old tech.

82% of organisations also want a simple solution to help their business recycle their unwanted devices, the study shows.

In response, Virgin Media O2 says it is relaunching its “O2 Recycle for Business”, which allows companies of all sizes to trade in their old devices. In return, companies can receive cash back, credit towards new devices, or can donate the funds to charity. Any company can use O2 Recycle for Business, regardless of their mobile provider.

Virgin Media O2 says O2 Recycle has processed over 3.8 million business and consumer devices since its launch in 2009, and last year paid out over £670,000 to businesses.

O2 Recycle for Business provides companies with a simple way to remove unused devices cluttering their offices.

As part of the service, devices are data wiped and 92% are either recycled or refurbished and resold as “like new” products to customers, with the remainder broken down for raw materials, Virgin Media O2 says.

Organisations can register multiple devices at once and arrange a free courier collection to take the devices away using the service. Employees working remotely who have many unused devices can also scan a QR code and post the items to O2 Recycle for free.

Businesses can use their credit to buy new devices via O2 or donate up to 100% of their cash back to Virgin Media O2’s charity partner, Good Things Foundation.

Jo Bertram, Managing Director at Virgin Media O2 Business, commented: “O2 Recycle for Business provides companies with a simple way to remove unused devices cluttering their offices – and be rewarded for it.”

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