New 'ATM' Takes Old Phones and Gives Back Green

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aoneone

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May 27, 2011
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hehe remember watching dumb criminals strapping cables to their car and trying to jack a cash atm? Well, get ready for more reports of phone atms being jacked ! ^_^ just to let u know!
 

kyuuketsuki

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May 17, 2011
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Can the machine identify issues that aren't identifiable from the exterior? Such as with my old Sony Ericcson slider-phone: it looks like it's in mint condition, but it doesn't power-on. I wonder if I put it into one of these machines if I'd get mint-condition price for a non-functional phone (not that that old phone would be worth much, if anything, but the same thing applies to newer devices).

Heck, I wonder if you could gut a phone and just stick the empty case/screen in there.
 

Johmama

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Aug 24, 2012
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[citation][nom]Kyuuketsuki[/nom]it looks like it's in mint condition, but it doesn't power-on.

Heck, I wonder if you could gut a phone and just stick the empty case/screen in there.[/citation]

I was wonder that same thing while I was reading this. What if I had perfectly good hardware for my phone, but I had bricked it a while back. Would it know? How COULD it know? As for the empty case scenario: I'm sure it has weights for all the models in its database so if it was off by even a little bit, it would know something was up. I still wanna know about the bricked devices though.
 
G

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I meet the Bowles earlier this year and learned a lot about how they started and what they do.
To answer some of your questions:
1. Any phone with a WIP antenna is worthless. The machine won't pay you anything for it but at least you can be green and recycle it rather than throwing it in the garbage
2. You have to plug your device into the ATM and it will run a software check to determine condition/functionality. I should have asked him what happens when you plug in a rooted android phone.
 

chewy1963

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May 9, 2012
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"Dubbed the ecoATM, the kiosk uses an artificial intelligence system that automatically detects and differentiates various consumer electronics."

And so Skynet begins.... o.o
 

ryankuder

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Hey, my name is Ryan and I'm the Marketing Director for ecoATM. I thought it might be helpful to answer a few of the questions here.

First, I've got an iPhone 4 in pretty good condition (light scratches, works fine). Yesterday, an ecoATM offered $130 for it. So we pay real money. For some phones, there's just no market for them, so we can't offer very much, but we will by anything we recognize as a phone for at least $1. If we can't find a new home for it, we'll recycle it with one of our certified recycling partners. Also, you never mail your phone to us, so there's no waiting then getting your phone downgraded. We tell you what we'll pay while you're standing there. If you like it, we spit out cash. If not, we give you you're phone back.

Regarding stolen phones. To buy a phone, you need to scan a valid ID to make sure it's you, we collect your thumbprint, and we provide reports to local authorities. If something is awry with your id (it's not you or it's expired or something), we won't finish the transaction. Because of all the regulations we need to follow and the technology we have to tie you to the phone you sold us, we're actually a really bad place to try to get rid of a stolen phone.

To see if your phone works, after we do a scan to identify what kind of phone it is, we give you a cable you'll need to plug in to your phone. We then do a test of the electronics and the software to make sure it works. We use optics to identify and analyze the physical condition of the phone and they're pretty advanced. We can tell the difference between a thumbprint and a crack shaped like a thumbprint because we use different techniques to check those things. We don't need to weigh the phones.

In any case, we do buy phones that are cracked or even phones that don't power up. You won't get full value for those kinds of phones, but we're happy to buy them.

Hopefully this answers some of the questions you all had. I'll monitor the thread in case any other questions come up.

Thanks!
Ryan
 

amdwilliam1985

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[citation][nom]ryankuder[/nom]Hey, my name is Ryan and I'm the Marketing Director for ecoATM. I thought it might be helpful to answer a few of the questions here. First, I've got an iPhone 4 in pretty good condition (light scratches, works fine). Yesterday, an ecoATM offered $130 for it. So we pay real money. For some phones, there's just no market for them, so we can't offer very much, but we will by anything we recognize as a phone for at least $1. If we can't find a new home for it, we'll recycle it with one of our certified recycling partners. Also, you never mail your phone to us, so there's no waiting then getting your phone downgraded. We tell you what we'll pay while you're standing there. If you like it, we spit out cash. If not, we give you you're phone back. Regarding stolen phones. To buy a phone, you need to scan a valid ID to make sure it's you, we collect your thumbprint, and we provide reports to local authorities. If something is awry with your id (it's not you or it's expired or something), we won't finish the transaction. Because of all the regulations we need to follow and the technology we have to tie you to the phone you sold us, we're actually a really bad place to try to get rid of a stolen phone.To see if your phone works, after we do a scan to identify what kind of phone it is, we give you a cable you'll need to plug in to your phone. We then do a test of the electronics and the software to make sure it works. We use optics to identify and analyze the physical condition of the phone and they're pretty advanced. We can tell the difference between a thumbprint and a crack shaped like a thumbprint because we use different techniques to check those things. We don't need to weigh the phones.In any case, we do buy phones that are cracked or even phones that don't power up. You won't get full value for those kinds of phones, but we're happy to buy them.Hopefully this answers some of the questions you all had. I'll monitor the thread in case any other questions come up.Thanks!Ryan[/citation]

Sounds good and legit.
Hoping to see it around my local malls and at more locations.
Also, it would be great if this idea expands to all electronics, I know it's hard, but it would be awesome.
I'm sure there are many people out there like me who holds on to a lot of old stuff not knowing what to do, and don't want to just throw it into garbage.
 

twelch82

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I'm surprised they went to that much effort. I thought they'd just have the machine grab the phone, hold it in front of a camera or webcam that uploads to a worker in an office in India, and give you a real-time estimate that way.
 

ryankuder

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Sep 21, 2012
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@TheCapulet We're actually have over 150 kiosks in 11 states so far and we will have 300 kiosks placed by the end of the year. Hopefully we'll have one near you soon. You can find out .

@twelch82 Our early prototypes did that, except not in India...there was an actual person standing next to the machine. The challenge is that a person can only identify so many types of phones just by looking at them. Our kiosks recognize nearly 4000 different devices and can evaluate the condition of each of them--fast. It's just not something a human can pull off in the amount of time someone would be willing to stand around and wait.
 

digiex

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Dubbed the ecoATM, the kiosk uses an artificial intelligence system that automatically detects and differentiates various consumer electronics.
Why does reading artificial intelligence in scientific articles freaks me out?
 

halcyon

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I went to RadioShack last night to look at a Galaxy S3. Okay, it was better than l expected. They offered me $350 store credit for my AT&T iPhone 4s...so I bit on a Sprint S3 and still have $60 store credit after getting a OtterBox and 32G SD card. Who says the iPhone isn't worth anything. I doubt any phone ATM could come close. ...yes, me, Mr. glass and alumiinum has switched to the dark side. I hadn't used an Android device since my Transformer Prime debacle back in February. ...tooka little while to re-adjust, but you know what? Not bad...not bad at all.

The screen on this thing is AMAZING...but you already knew this. Battery life could be better but I'll tweak. Speed...so much that its not an issue.

So far I don't miss my 4s. We'll see if I keep this puppy or move back to an iPhone 5.

No frick'n ATM can match Radio Shack...thankyouverymuch.
 

alextheblue

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Apr 3, 2001
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[citation][nom]halcyon[/nom]I went to RadioShack last night to look at a Galaxy S3. Okay, it was better than l expected. They offered me $350 store credit for my AT&T iPhone 4s...so I bit on a Sprint S3 and still have $60 store credit after getting a OtterBox and 32G SD card. Who says the iPhone isn't worth anything. I doubt any phone ATM could come close. ...yes, me, Mr. glass and alumiinum has switched to the dark side. I hadn't used an Android device since my Transformer Prime debacle back in February. ...tooka little while to re-adjust, but you know what? Not bad...not bad at all.The screen on this thing is AMAZING...but you already knew this. Battery life could be better but I'll tweak. Speed...so much that its not an issue.So far I don't miss my 4s. We'll see if I keep this puppy or move back to an iPhone 5. No frick'n ATM can match Radio Shack...thankyouverymuch.[/citation]
Wait does this mean I don't have to read any more rambling iSheep nonsense posts by you? No offense but I groaned just about every time you got started down that road, even when you were right, and even when I upvoted your post.
 

halcyon

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Dec 4, 2004
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[citation][nom]alextheblue[/nom]Wait does this mean I don't have to read any more rambling iSheep nonsense posts by you? No offense but I groaned just about every time you got started down that road, even when you were right, and even when I upvoted your post.[/citation]

lol, I do try.
 
G

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Definitely helpful. I mean It's a bright idea, I do buy a used cell phone's, like collecting it but theirs another way to make it useful. Thank God! :)
 
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