As early as January, Samsung announced that it would provide system updates for old Galaxy phones. So users could use them as a ‘Galaxy Upcycling at Home’ program for smart home devices. Specifically, the plan allows older devices to receive software updates through the SmartThings app and turn them into light sensors, baby monitors, cameras, or audio solutions.
‘We created Galaxy Upcycling at Home to enable more people to repurpose their old devices into useful tools. This allows both Samsung and our users to be mindful of the impact we have on the environment,’ said Sung-Koo Kim, VP of the Sustainability Management Office, Mobile Communications Business at Samsung Electronics. ‘We are rethinking how we use existing resources. And we believe the key to upcycling is to enable solutions that transform old technology into something new by adding value. We are committed to integrating sustainable practices into our day-to-day lives. And through Galaxy Upcycling at Home, users can join our journey toward a more sustainable future.’
Briefly About Galaxy Upcycling at Home program
This project can currently be used in the United Kingdom, the United States and South Korea. With this update, old Galaxy phones can be ‘transformed’ into simple IoT devices. For example, these simple IoT devices provide enhanced sound and light control functions by using the built-in sensors of smartphones. Users can access these functions through SmartThings Labs through the SmartThings app. They can even become light sensors that can also be used to measure the brightness of the room. It can be used when the room becomes darker than the set standard lighting. The user can just set the device to automatically turn on the lights through SmartThings.
Regarding the range of applicable devices, Samsung said that this feature is applicable to all Galaxy S, Galaxy Note and Galaxy Z models released and installed with Android 9 and higher in 2018. Support for more devices will be added in the future.