Verizon Wireless launches recycling/trade-in program

Users can earn gift cards, and donate old phones to Verizon's HopeLine program that provides devices to victims of domestic violence

Verizon Wireless Friday launched a wireless device trade-in program, offering users a convenient way to recycle old gear -- and get a gift card if the product retains any residual value.

Under the Verizon Wireless Trade-In Program, customers submit details about their device online and then receive a postage-paid envelope to mail it to the company, Verizon said. The device can be from any wireless vendor, Verizon said.

Customers may receive a Verizon Wireless gift card by mail if the device has value, based on its make, model and condition. The card can be used to purchase a new phone or accessory, or to pay a Verizon Wireless bill.

Even if there is no appraised value, the device can be sent to the company for recycling.

Verizon customers also have the option of donating old devices to Verizon's HopeLine initiative, which was started in 2001 to recycle older phones and give some refurbished ones to victims of domestic violence.

HopeLine has collected some 7 million phones, 90,000 of which have been distributed with free wireless service. In addition, Verizon has donated nearly $8 million in cash grants to groups working to prevent domestic violence.

HopeLine estimates it has properly disposed of 1.6 million wireless phones that could no longer be used, keeping 200 tons of electronics and batteries out of landfills.

A Youtube video explains HopeLine.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen, or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed . His e-mail address is mhamblen@computerworld.com.

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