15 great ways to Repurpose your Android Phone

STOP ! dont sell that Android device !

A new year and yet another craving to own the latest and greatest android phone that new number of 8 or 9 or 10 making your existing device outdated.

zip zap zoom - you bought the new phone and your current phone is too dear to be sold off.

Here is what you do with it >

1. Use it as a dedicated camcorder

Whatever you're recording -- a wedding, a kid's soccer game, a music video or your sure-to-win-the-film-fest indie movie -- nothing beats multiple cameras. When it comes time to edit, you can mix footage from different angles and positions to create much more interesting video.

Needless to say, your old Android can make a great second camera. Even older, lower-end phones can usually capture at least 1,920x1,080-pixel video at 30 frames per second. Clear out as much storage as possible to make room for new footage and you're good to go.

2. Use it as a video doorbell

No baby? Consider putting your Android on door duty instead. No, the phone itself doesn't go outside; you'll need to install either an outdoor Wi-Fi webcam or a smart doorbell. Then your phone can serve as a full-time video monitor, one that lives on, say, a coffee table or nightstand.

For example, the Canary Flex is a versatile, security-minded webcam that can go just about anywhere -- including outside. Alternately, check out video doorbells like the August Doorbell Cam, DoorBird Video Door Station, Ring Video Doorbell and SkyBell Video Doorbell.

3. Create a dedicated VR headset

Get ready for a surprise. That old Android phone of yours? Virtual-reality powerhouse! It's true: A smartphone can serve up some terrific VR experiences. All you need is a headset and some apps.

Even more surprising: a headset won't cost you much. Amazon, for example, offers dozens of universally compatible VR goggles priced in the $20-to-$35 range (AU$26-AU$46, £15-£27). Look for a model that lets you adjust focal width and length, the better to accommodate less-than-perfect vision. I also recommend choosing one that comes with a Bluetooth gamepad, the better to control games and access menus.

As for the apps, hit the Google Play Store and search for "VR" or "Google Cardboard ($15.00 at Google Store)." Both will reveal a wealth of games and other experiences that are compatible with nearly any Android and VR headset.

4. DIY Google Home

Don't want to spend $129 for Google's voice-powered smart speaker? That's understandable, especially when you can put together something similar for a lot less. Unless it's really old, your old phone can listen for and respond to voice commands, same as a Google Home. So all you need is a speaker to round out the equation.

What kind of speaker? And what kinds of things can you do with a phone-brain that you can't do with an actual Home? Find out in "Turn a spare Android phone into a Google Home."

5. Reframe it as a full-time video conferencing station

Set up your old Android device with the app for your video-chatting platform of choice — Skype, Hangouts Meet, Google Duo or whatever the case may be — then drop it into a dock on your desk or conference room table. Say "hocus pocus" for good measure, and ta-da: You've just created a permanent access point for virtual face-to-face communications.

Just think: With enough old phones and tablets, you can create an entire house- or office-wide video conferencing system. Sign each device into its own unique account, with the name of the room as its username, and seeing someone across the building will never be more than a couple quick taps away.

6. Convert it into a digital photo frame.

Ah, memories. Snag an inexpensive stand, plug your device into its charger and turn it into a cloud-connected photo frame for your home or office.

If you use Google Photos, just open up the app, tap on any photo in your main library or within a specific album and then tap the three-dot menu icon in the upper-right corner of the screen and select "Slideshow." The app will cycle through your photos and give you plenty of memories to reflect upon whilst relaxing or taking care of business.

7. Use it as a dedicated e-reader

Want a distraction-free reading environment for your next business trip or public transit commute? Load up your old Android device with only the apps you need for reading — Google Play Books, Amazon Kindle, Nook or whatever tickles your text-ingesting fancy.

You can even borrow books from your local library: Check with your nearest branch for information on how to do it or download the free OverDrive app, which is used by a variety of libraries, schools and institutions.

Be sure to disable notifications from Gmail and other noisy apps — heck, even switch the device into airplane mode once you've downloaded the content you need — and you've got the equivalent of a dedicated e-reader without all the usual phone or tablet temptations.

8. Make it a mounted command center for your car

Save yourself the hassle of futzing around with your current phone in your car by turning your old device into an always-available in-car command center.

Find a decent car dock and mount the device somewhere safe. Be sure to plug it into your car's power port and connect it to the stereo (via Bluetooth or a 3.5mm headphone jack). Then, either use your primary phone as a hotspot to keep it online or go the economical route and download any necessary music and directions before you hit the road, while you're still connected to Wi-Fi.

Grab the Android Auto app for a simplified interface with large buttons and extra voice commands, and that's it: Your newly repurposed companion is ready to roll.

9. Convert it into a gaming device for your downtime

Put down the briefcase and summon your inner Pac-Man: Silly as it may seem, your old Android device is a mini-arcade just waiting to be called into action. (Hey, we all need the occasional break from working, right?)

To complete your device's Game-Boy-like transformation, just surf the Play Store for some games — you can even find emulators for console-level systems, if (ahem) you know where to look — and then level up by grabbing one of Moga's universal Android game controllers, available for $25 and up.

10. Turn it into your personal testing ground

Android is a tinkerer's dream. It typically doesn't take too much sorcery to root, or gain system-level access to, an Android device — and once you've done that, you open up a whole new world of possibilities. You can install powerful root-only applications and even replace your device's entire operating system with a custom ROM full of fresh features and advanced customization potential.

Anytime you start poking around under the hood, though, you risk screwing something up. And when the device in question is your primary phone or tablet, that can be a daunting gamble to take (especially since rooting a device usually violates its warranty).

That's where an old phone or tablet can come into play. Put on your hacker's hat and do a Google search for "root [your device name]" and then "[your device name] ROM." There's a huge community of Android enthusiasts out there, and you'll almost certainly find some helpful user-generated guides to get yourself started.

11. Gym device

Your old smartphone can be used as an ideal gym device. Reformat the device to remove unnecessary apps, take out the SIM card, and don’t log into Facebook or Twitter via WiFi, and you’ll avoid any unnecessary notifications that could interrupt your workout.

Then take your pick of the countless fitness-tracking apps out there and boot it up — or just pack it full of music and use it as an MP3 player when out and about or on the treadmill.

Bonus: Pair it with a cheap fitness tracker or smartwatch for extra functionality.

12. TV remote control

Check if your smartphone has an infrared emitter — because if it does, you could use it as a TV remote. With the various TV remote apps out there, it should easily work with most TVs and top boxes.

13. Wi-Fi extender

If you're plagued by weak Wi-Fi, you can boost the signal throughout your house by installing an app like fqrouter2, which will pick up the signal and repeat it. It will require rooting the device to work.

14. Robot brain

So, we’ve established that Android smartphones are computers. You know what else is technically a computer? A robot. And yes, with a bit of work you can turn your Android smartphone into a functional robot brain.

There are multiple examples of smartphones being used to power robots. Take the Cubestormer 3, which can solve a Rubik’s Cube in 3.253 seconds and is built out of Lego. Or the Smartbot, which is programmable and can navigate, hear and “see." Or you can build one yourself, using around $30-worth (£20-worth) of kit.

15. Dashcam

Here's another automotive possibility: a dashcam.

Mount your Android to your car dashboard, camera facing the round, and you've got yourself a DIY dashcam, something that can be invaluable in accidents and for insurance claims. There are plenty of apps out there that will complete the transformation.


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