iPhone SE Repurposing old iPhone

SHirsch999

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Apr 19, 2011
652
180
I have an iPhone SE that is just sitting on my nightstand with a dead battery since my daughter upgraded to an iPhone 8 over the holidays. It works fine but the battery kinda sucks. It’s not worth much for trade in ($20 at Best Buy or Apple) so there’s no point to that when I may get something useful out of it. So, I need ideas for what I can use it for. I’d hate for it to just sit around as an emergency phone. Can it sit on a charger all the time?
 

Tulani

macrumors 6502a
Dec 6, 2012
923
114
find a disadvantaged individual who would like owning one and put in a new battery for them and give it away

a shelter might not find the same ownership joy for just this single and "spent" device. it might end up being shoved away somewhere if they have better alternatives
 
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revmacian

macrumors 68000
Oct 20, 2018
1,745
1,449
USA
I have an iPhone SE that is just sitting on my nightstand with a dead battery since my daughter upgraded to an iPhone 8 over the holidays. It works fine but the battery kinda sucks. It’s not worth much for trade in ($20 at Best Buy or Apple) so there’s no point to that when I may get something useful out of it. So, I need ideas for what I can use it for. I’d hate for it to just sit around as an emergency phone. Can it sit on a charger all the time?
Do you have an aged family member who could benefit from a Siri hub? The phone could be mounted in a case on a wall and used for Siri or emergencies (calling 911, etc).
 

eyoungren

macrumors Core
Aug 31, 2011
22,095
14,818
ten-zero-eleven-zero-zero by zero-two
I have an iPhone SE that is just sitting on my nightstand with a dead battery since my daughter upgraded to an iPhone 8 over the holidays. It works fine but the battery kinda sucks. It’s not worth much for trade in ($20 at Best Buy or Apple) so there’s no point to that when I may get something useful out of it. So, I need ideas for what I can use it for. I’d hate for it to just sit around as an emergency phone. Can it sit on a charger all the time?
I use my old iPhones for various things, but the main use is as a media device. An old iPhone can still use WiFi and Bluetooth, thus streaming media is still a thing.
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If you wanna keep it for personal use then a casual music player is probably the best use for it after a battery replacement.
I agree with you on the music player, but I don't believe a new battery is strictly necessary. I have a powered USB hub at my desk at work. Anytime I'm using my old iPhone 4 to stream music it's plugged directly into that hub.
 
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SalisburySam

macrumors regular
May 19, 2019
121
95
Salisbury, North Carolina
a shelter might not find the same ownership joy for just this single and "spent" device. it might end up being shoved away somewhere if they have better alternatives
Not sure why you feel this way. The ones I’ve spoken to do not have “better alternatives.” They are always looking for cellphones as donations to give their residents and out-residents the ability to dial the emergency 9-1-1 number if needed. This is a huge desire at the shelters I’ve dealt with and they are very, very thankful. The smartphone features are rarely used and only the 9-1-1 is enabled with providers at low- to no cost. These users are not getting a smartphone for their “ownership joy” but a phone for survival.
 

akash.nu

macrumors G3
May 26, 2016
8,768
10,055
I agree with you on the music player, but I don't believe a new battery is strictly necessary. I have a powered USB hub at my desk at work. Anytime I'm using my old iPhone 4 to stream music it's plugged directly into that hub.
I was going with more of a wireless solution so that the phone can be moved around and potentially with a smart home setup the OP could play whatever he likes whenever he likes from wherever he is. But if there’s not much area to move around then yeah your solution works as well.
 

nicho

macrumors 68040
Feb 15, 2008
3,307
2,019
Not sure why you feel this way. The ones I’ve spoken to do not have “better alternatives.” They are always looking for cellphones as donations to give their residents and out-residents the ability to dial the emergency 9-1-1 number if needed. This is a huge desire at the shelters I’ve dealt with and they are very, very thankful. The smartphone features are rarely used and only the 9-1-1 is enabled with providers at low- to no cost. These users are not getting a smartphone for their “ownership joy” but a phone for survival.
I can only hope they mistakenly thought the suggestion was for the shelter itself to use it (instead of a landline or something?)
 

aue123

macrumors regular
Jan 24, 2019
135
71
ohio
in my experience, giving away old phones doesn’t fair well for the phone. people don’t respect things they don’t buy with their own money, the phone will be destroyed sooner then you’d imagine.
 
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akash.nu

macrumors G3
May 26, 2016
8,768
10,055
in my experience, giving away old phones doesn’t fair well for the phone. people don’t respect things they don’t buy with their own money, the phone will be destroyed sooner then you’d imagine.
Depends on who you’re giving it out to.
 
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Relentless Power

macrumors Nehalem
Jul 12, 2016
33,244
34,254
I have an iPhone SE that is just sitting on my nightstand with a dead battery since my daughter upgraded to an iPhone 8 over the holidays. It works fine but the battery kinda sucks. It’s not worth much for trade in ($20 at Best Buy or Apple) so there’s no point to that when I may get something useful out of it. So, I need ideas for what I can use it for. I’d hate for it to just sit around as an emergency phone. Can it sit on a charger all the time?
$20? I wouldn’t even trade it in and waste my time, you could sell it out right, which in my area, they’re still selling for ~$85-$90 used.
 

Burebista

macrumors regular
Oct 8, 2019
137
112
It may technically be an “old” iPhone but for the majority of tasks SE is as fast as a current flagship. Not sure what you gained from upgrading to the 8...

As for uses cases, obviously it’s much better for outdoors activities and travel than the bulkier expensive phones. Lightweight, unobtrusive, great ergonomics and cheap to repair.

You can take it abroad, for the hike, for jogging, for second sim card - all depends on your use cases, but it can be a useful as a secondary phone for years to come while still providing great performance.
 

bransoj

macrumors 65816
Jul 31, 2013
1,050
274
I used to use my old 5S as a music player permanently connected to the USB port in my car.
 

rui no onna

macrumors G3
Oct 25, 2013
8,361
4,354
It may technically be an “old” iPhone but for the majority of tasks SE is as fast as a current flagship. Not sure what you gained from upgrading to the 8...
OP already said battery on the SE was bad.

Apart from battery, the 8 also means longer software updates. I've seen deals on the 8 for add-a-line, etc making it essentially free.
 

uecker87

macrumors 6502
Oct 9, 2014
299
409
Madison, WI
AirMessage for iMessage on Android when you occasionally switch to a Pixel phone like me. :D

Then again I know I'm in the minority that switch back and forth multiple times per year between iOS and Android.
 
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