Types of Reuse and Recycling Services

It’s important to know the type of internal processes in your IT asset manager or computer drop-off site. Here are a few distinctions.

Recyclers: These are the programs that scrap your electronics in hopes of recovering commodities like gold, silver, tin and others.

Buy-back programs: Some original manufacturers offer cash in return for your old devices. These may be resold by the manufacturer, a third-party reseller or to a recycler. Federal legislation is still improving to require more of manufacturer buy-back programs.

Recommerce & reuse: These are the companies that will take your broken old cell phone or outdated laptop, fix it up and resell it. Even within this category there are a few different types that are worth noting*.

a) Corporate IT Asset Managers— these companies receive inflowing IT in bulk from large corporations and run a factory-tier refurbishing operation. They may resell privately to companies or through third-party markets like amazon and eBay.

b) Social enterprises— these are often non-profit organizations that redistribute large appliances and IT through charities.

b) Close the digital divide— these entities attempt to get computers into the hands of needy organizations and individuals while increasing digital literacy and self-empowerment through technology. The most well-known such organization is Free Geek.

These groupings are certainly non-exclusive and e360 Technologies incorporates aspects from each. We receive computers both from companies and smaller organizations and individuals, refurbish in a meticulous factory assembly line and aim to redistribute to those in digital need both directly and through third-party marketplaces.

*For a very in-depth coverage of these categories of e-waste handlers and other e-waste reduction efforts, check out the StEP (Solving the E-waste Problem) report on best practices in reuse.