Not too many years ago, used desktop computers were piled up high in town dumps and in dumpsters. Next came used laptops. And now older tablet computers are starting to pile up too.
Do tablets contain significant quantities of gold and other precious metals that can be extracted by precious metals refineries? Here’s the story.
Tablet computers contain quantities of gold, silver, platinum and palladium – just as all devices that use printed circuit boards do. Tablets, however, usually contain smaller quantities of precious metals. That’s because they do not have hard drives, Ethernet or phone ports, and other devices that are standard on laptops.
If you have a quantity of several hundred used tablets or more that you’d like to recycle profitably, how can you tell what their precious metals are worth? First call Specialty Metals Smelters and Refiners at 800-426-2344 to tell us about the quantity of scrap computer tablets you have on hand. At that point, we may ask you to send one or two tablets to us for analysis.
Opportunity: The Number of Used Tablets Is about to Surge
Apple launched the first iPad in 2010. As of October, 2013, the company had sold 170 million of them. Then there are all the tablets that have been sold by Amazon, Samsung, and other companies. According to data collected by Gigaom.com, 25% of all computers sold today are tablets.
All those tablets will soon start to outlive their useful life. The lesson? If you are an electronics retailer, a town recycling center, or another organization that is able to collect used electronic scrap devices, now would be a good time to start an eScrap trade-in or recycling program that encourages people to give their older tablets to you. Then get ready to accept a growing number of old tablets in the months and years ahead.
Your Two-Step Program for Profitable Tablet Computer Recycling
First, find a way to collect quantities of used tablets. Depending on the nature of your business, you could encourage trade-ins or donations.
Second, find the best precious metals refiners to extract the gold and other metals that they contain.
Consider Using Manufacturers’ Recycling Programs Too
Amazon accepts Kindle trade-ins and Apple has a similar program for recycling used iPads. If your main objective is recycling used tablets without getting paid for the precious metals that they contain, programs like those are worth considering.