UBreakiFix, Orlando, Florida, and Samsung have launched the Erase E-Waste Challenge. The six-week initiative encourages consumers to sort through their unused electronics and recycle their unwanted devices for free at participating uBreakiFix locations by Earth Day, which is April 22.
Since 2008, Samsung says it has supported extended producer responsibility, collecting and recycle e-scrap and supporting requirements that would ban the export of unprocessed e-scrap to developing countries. Samsung is leveraging uBreakiFix’s network of more than 570 stores across the U.S. to help consumers recycle their unwanted devices.
“Most people have some sort of shoebox, junk drawer or storage closet where they stash their old tech,” uBreakiFix President and co-founder Justin Wetherill says. “A lot of people don’t know where they can go or what they can do with their old devices, and they assume that dealing with them will be a hassle. What we don’t want is for those devices to eventually end up in the trash and in a landfill somewhere. Samsung is a leader in sustainability solutions, and we’re excited to help further its efforts by making tech recycling more widely available to consumers. We’re challenging everyone to join us in this initiative and look forward to seeing the impact we can have by Earth Day and beyond.”
UBreakiFix store will accept devices of any brand, make or model. The company says it will process the devices and route them to a Samsung-authorized recycling partner, where they will be refurbished or processed into commodities for future reuse. While recyclers will take steps to destroy data from these devices in accordance with the e-Stewards Standard uBreakiFix recommends consumers proactively wipe personal data from devices before recycling when possible. A full list of eligible devices, visit ubreakifix.com/tech-recycling.
Those who recycle with uBreakiFix can also request a free tech check on any device, such as their smartphone or laptop, to learn how to make their favorite devices last as long as possible, the company says.
“At uBreakiFix, reducing e-waste starts with educating consumers about their options so they can make informed decisions about their tech,” Wetherill says. “For us, repair is more than fixing a cracked screen; it’s about making our customers’ tech last longer so they can upgrade when they want to, not because they feel they have to. If a device is beyond repair, or if a consumer no longer has a need for it, we can now take those devices off their hands and responsibly recycle them with the help of our partners at Samsung.”
For devices still in good working order, uBreakiFix encourages consumers to explore opportunities to upcycle by gifting, preserving, repurposing, or donating them.
“Though we are inviting our customers to rally behind this cause in honor of Earth Day, we do offer tech recycling year-round,” Wetherill says. “We hope the Erase E-Waste Challenge will bring greater awareness to the need for tech recycling, as well as the widespread availability of drop-off locations at uBreakiFix stores across the U.S.”