What do you do with your old technology? Do you pass it on to someone who does not need the latest and greatest; do you donate it to a charity that asks for it; or do you simply throw it out? Considering all of the materials in modern technology, throwing a device away is probably not the best idea, and ecoATM, with the help of the National Science Foundation, are looking to change that.
As the company's name suggests, they have developed and produce what look like ATM machines, but instead of being a device to withdraw funds from an account, what they build will actually examine an older device and appraise its value for you. You may then decide if you want to sell that old device, such as a phone, to the machine for money or a gift card. After the transaction takes place, the old device is often found a new home, but a quarter of the time is disposed of in a more environmentally appropriate way than just putting it in a landfill.
To accomplish this, the machine uses machine vision, robotics, and even artificial intelligence, as it must properly determine the market value of what you give it. Currently it has better than a 97.5% accuracy rating for this appraisal, which is part of why ecoATM is looking to get it into more places. The aim is to have 300 machines deployed by the end of this year.