your old laptops can make you rich, do you have any?

Rare metals in appliances

In smartphones, there are several rare metals like gold or lithium but also silver. Let us also mention other elements such as copper and cobalt, but also some lesser known ones including tungsten, gallium, tantalum, niobium, indium or palladium. The units are also made of plastic.

When you change your smartphone, you have the opportunity to resell the old one. If it is in good condition or in very good condition, you can get a nice sum: around € 150. And even if it is broken down, it is possible to recycle small parts for a fee. Recycling smartphones is an increasingly encouraged gesture. Republican President Emmanuel Macron is considering creating a bonus to highlight the recycling of old devices. It must be said that environmental issues are becoming increasingly important. In addition, this topic was discussed in depth during the election campaign.

The “Return Bonus” wanted by Emmanuel Macron

To encourage the French to reuse their old smartphones, Emmanuel Macron’s campaign team between the two rounds of the election had thought of a “payback bonus”. The goal? Offer a sum of money to people who recycle their old phones. And when Emmanuel Macron was re-elected, this bonus could be established during his second term. But at the moment there is nothing concrete. No vote was taken. The legislative process takes some time. We do not know what the amount of this bonus would be or the conditions for using it.

Members of the LREM party said it would be a matter of encouraging the collection of phones, which are “real city mines in our pockets and in our drawers”. This bonus would have two purposes: to motivate / reward people who recycle; allow the industry to recycle coins and other metals. As stated before, this measure was announced between the two rounds of the 2022 presidential election, and it was not in the candidate’s starting program. It seems that it was designed to please the green voters and prevent them from abstaining or voting for the RN candidate. Is this a political calculation or a real ecological measure? We will see in the coming months.

Phones: a large number of devices

Smartphones cannot be reused (up to 80%), but they can simply be repaired or repaired. In France and according to the Ecological Transition Agency, the drawers of the French would have between 54 and 110 million unused units. A finer estimate is difficult to make, but these figures show that there really is material to be recycled.

Reuse of appliances means less digging in the ground. This is another step to protect the planet that is already suffering. It is also a way to be less dependent on other countries by having more resources available in France. In recent years, many journalists have condemned planned obsolescence, which is a real nuisance. In fact, manufacturers manage to get their devices to stop working very quickly.

The purpose of the maneuver is for manufacturers to sell more products. Thus, some make phone batteries difficult to replace. Apple is a brand that is often highlighted for making it difficult to repair devices.


In addition, many brands offer regular updates to eventually make a device unusable after a few years. Everything is made to be consumed over and over again. But more and more consumers are rejecting this model and wanting a new lifestyle without harming the planet too much. Associations are evolving to offer alternatives to this lifestyle.

In the coming weeks and months, Objeko will be sure to give you valuable advice on environmental topics.


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