Try these 5 uses for old smartphone
By Kim Komando
Published: Friday, Oct. 4, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
Unless you've been living under a rock, you know Apple has released two new iPhones. With much less fanfare, new Android and Windows Phone smartphones enter the market regularly.
So you decide it's time to put down your hard-earned money on one of these latest and greatest gadgets. What do you do with your old smartphone? Well, you can always sell it and make some of your money back.
There are other options. A smartphone is basically a portable computer, and you can program it to do plenty of other things.
First, however, you need to turn off cellular data. Otherwise, your phone will drain your battery while trying to find a signal. On an iPhone, go to Settings>>Cellular. For an iPad, it's Settings>>Cellular Data. Turn Cellular Data off.
In Android, swipe down from the top of the screen and look for the Mobile Data icon. You also might have a widget on your home screen.
Otherwise, go to Settings and under Wireless and Network, tap More Settings>>Mobile networks and uncheck Mobile data. The steps could vary by manufacturer, so check your manual if this doesn't work for you.
On a Windows Phone, go to the App list and go to Settings>>Cellular. Turn Data connection to Off. Make sure “For limited Wi-Fi connectivity” is set to “Don't use cellular data.”
Now it's time to turn it into something else. The easiest option is a portable media player.
• A media streaming gadget and player
Load it up with your favorite songs, shows or movies and pair it with a good set of earbuds. For a media manager, DoubleTwist is a popular option that works for any gadget.
Your gadget can also use your home Wi-Fi to stream videos or music. Fire up Netflix or Amazon's Music service app and go to town.
If your phone has an HDMI port, it can connect to your HDTV. You can use it as a media-streaming gadget in place of a Roku box or Apple TV.
If your smartphone doesn't have HDMI, it can still be a part of your home theater. There are infrared attachments that turn a smartphone into a powerful universal remote. If you have a newer TV, check to see if the TV manufacturer has a remote control app.
• A portable gaming unit
If you have a child or grandchild begging for a Nintendo DS or Sony Vita, your old smartphone can be better. There are hundreds of game apps to entertain them, and many of them are free!
Candy Crush Saga is the current must-play game that has everyone addicted. It would be a good distraction on a long car ride.
• A fine GPS
Your smartphone makes a fine GPS with an app like NavFree USA. It downloads maps to use offline and offers free turn-by-turn navigation. Google Maps can also download maps offline.
• Kitchen recipe holder
In addition to a co-pilot, your smartphone can be your assistant chef. Load it up with some cooking apps and your favorite recipes. Fire up a recipe site.
• An alarm clock
If your gadget doesn't find a home in your kitchen or living room, bring it into the bedroom. Turn it into alarm clock with an app like Alarm Clock Xtreme for Android or iHome+Sleep for iOS.
Email Kim Komando at email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Garden Q&A: Firecracker vine OK for trellis?
- Starkey: Penguins’ arrogance astounding
- Matt Calvert’s goal in double OT evens series for Blue Jackets
- Penguins’ Gibbons scores twice but leaves with apparent injury
- Pair of Braun homers spells defeat for Pirates
- 1 dead, 1 wounded in shooting at Chartiers party
- Draftees’ longevity key for NFL success
- NFL notebook: Pryor will be cut if he’s not traded
- North Versailles, Murrysville families still waiting for report on 2011 chopper crash that killed couple
- Patients denied as donor organs discarded
- Meat prices drain barbecue budgets