Recycling policy

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By looking for my previous phone, I realised that I have 4 of them that can be recycled.
Lumia 930, Lumia 535, Lumia 925 and Nokia X7

Does Fairphone recycling it?

Every phone that still boots you get 20€ for if you send it in, but afaik you can put more old phones in the parcel and they will recycle them.


You get a discount of €20 (or €40 if sending FP1/FP2) regardless of the number of phones you send in. So sending 4 Nokias will get you a total discount of €20. You’ll need to provide the IMEI number of one phone that boots up, this is what they’ll check to process the discount. Additional phones can be sent (probably even non-booting ones), but won’t increase the discount. At least, this is what the Ts&Cs mention:

2.2 A Participant may send in multiple Products. However, the Participant will only receive one Recycling Refund, which shall never exceed the amounts of €20 or €40 per order respectively, per Fairphone 3 smartphone purchase. The device of which you use the IMEI number to get our free shipping label should at least be able to boot up.


In Germany “Media-Markt” is testing in 10 markets machines, where you can sell your old phone. If it’s too old, you will get no money for it. The machine automatically assesses the phone and names a value (even for broken phones/displays). If you accept this, you will receive a voucher to present at the counter. The automat also checks for locked phones and the IMEI of stolen phones and you have to give your personal data and present a passport at the counter. This shall hinder “selling” stolen phones to the machines.

The automats are produced by the american company ecoATM and - so the article states - already established in the UK and USA. Sounds interesting.
You of course might be able to sell your phone for more money on marketplaces like eBay etc., but not that easy and convenient of course.

By the way:
The ecoATM homepage (covering machines in the USA) does not know Fairphone.
But they accept readers (like kindle) and tablets as well. And they have on their homepage an explanation on how to prepare your phone for selling it to the machine.
And there is an ecoATM-app to evaluate the value of a phone.

Here is the article in a German newspaper, that talks about the test in Germany.
Media-Markt startet einen Versuch mit Altgeräte-Automaten, die das Telefon bewerten un
d einen Gutschein ausgeben.

Wenn das Telefon zu alt ist, gibt es aber kein Geld mehr; und auf dem freien Markt möglicherweise mehr (aber natürlich nicht einfacher).
Wäre mal interessant, wie das Fairhphone bewertet wird.


After receiving my FP3, I sent my FP1 for recycling. Why does Fairphone ask “make sure your phone can be turned on!”? I suppose the value of an old FP1 is in the materials. This does not change if the phone cannot boot anymore.
Note: I was still using the FP1, no problem. :smiley:

I think this has to do with Fairphone’s promise that their recycling partner properly deletes all remaining personal data from phones sent in.

Then only solution would be to keep your old phones at home. This is not what Fairphone wants.
There are special shredders that can handle electronic devices. After shredding, it is unlikely that data is read. See here: Largest E-Waste Shredder At Electronic Recyclers

Well, I guess their partner wants to increase the likelihood that every now and then a phone they get can still get reused. They do shred, but I guess they don’t want this to be done more often than necessary.


I see two other possible explanations:

  • They want to make sure, that they do not handle stolen devices. If it can be turned on, they can at least check the IMEI of the device and make sure, that it is not listed as stolen. The stickers on the phone are no equivalent, as they can be damaged, lost or faked.
  • Or maybe they have a contract with the Recycling Company, making it an obligation to supply working devices. The amount of money money they get from this Company for the phones could be based on this fact. So, maybe Fairphone can only afford to give the refund for old phones, if they are still in working order.

Otherwise I would agree with @Marcel7.
All good intentions to increase the amount of reused phones is hardly justifying the exclusion of defective phones from recycling. I would rather, they refund less for broken devices in that case.

Hello. I returned my FP1 for recycling a couple of months ago and have heard nothing back about the discount. How are people being informed?

You get it on your bank IBAN you mentioned within 4-6 weeks. I haven’t received it yet, but I also send it a little bit late.

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