Optus launches new initiative to donate your used phones

Australia’s second-largest telco, Optus, is launching a new initiative which builds on its ‘Donate Your Data’ program. Now Optus customers can not only donate any unused data to those who need it, but with the launch of the new ‘Donate Your Device’ program, you can also donate your old phone to someone in need.

Launched in collaboration with charity Good 360, this new in-store service from Optus will allow customers to donate unused devices. These devices will then be paired with a ‘Donate Your Data’ SIM card — which includes unlimited calls and SMS on a prepaid plan — so the recipient has everything they need to stay connected.

If you want to participate, all you need to do is drop your device off in an Optus store and they’ll help sort out the donation, with these pre-used phones being cleaned and cleared of data before donation. Phones which are unable to be donated will be recycled.

“Optus is proud to be working with our customers to enable Australians in need to power their potential by providing them with the essentials required to thrive in a digital world. We believe all Australians should be able to stay connected.” said Optus’ Managing Director, Marketing and Revenue, Matt Williams.

Combating e-waste

Not only does the ‘Donate Your Device’ initiative help Aussies in need, but it also helps to address the growing issue of e-waste. According to data from the Global E-waste Monitor 2020, around 53.6 million metric tonnes of e-waste is generated globally. On the same note, research released from online marketplace eBay states that Australians are sitting on $6.4 billion worth of unused mobile phones, further proof that unused devices are really piling up.

Considering how often technology changes, and how life cycles of tech products seems to get shorter and shorter, it’s no surprise that e-waste is becoming such an issue. Once you upgrade your device, most of us just leave our old phones in the desk drawer. Maybe you’re keeping it as a backup, or you plan on selling it for some extra cash, but just never get around to it.

If you fit into either of those categories, and you’re an Optus customer, the opportunity to donate your old phone might be the incentive you need to pull that device out of the desk drawer, so it can be put to better use.

Phones on plans

If you’re ready to donate your old device and upgrade to a new smartphone, there’s a wide range of phones available on plans from the major Australian telcos. We’ve compiled several in the below tables for you to compare.

The following table shows a selection of 24-month 128GB Samsung Galaxy S21 plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of standard monthly cost, from the lowest to highest and then by data allowance, largest to smallest. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.

The following table shows a selection of 24-month 128GB iPhone 13 plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of standard monthly cost, from the lowest to highest and then by data allowance, largest to smallest. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.

The following table shows a selection of 24-month Google Pixel 6 plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of standard monthly cost, from the lowest to highest and then by data allowance, largest to smallest. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers. This is a selection of products with links to a referral partner.

Donate Your Data with Optus

The new ‘Donate Your Device’ program is another positive step for the telco, after launching its ‘Donate Your Data’ initiative in 2019. This service gives Optus postpaid and prepaid phone plan customers the ability to donate a portion of their monthly data allowance via the Optus app.

This data is then passed on to Aussies in need, as a way to help address the digital divide that still impacts many low-income or vulnerable members of the community. Access to mobile data allows more opportunities to improve work and education, access important information and services, and to also keep in touch with friends and family.

Donated data is pooled, then distributed by Optus to organisations working with disadvantaged young Australians. Recipients are given a prepaid SIM card with unlimited calls and SMS, and a data allowance every 42 days, with the donated data then added to plans as a data boost.

Optus was the winner of the 2020 Canstar Blue Innovation Excellence award for the Telecommunications industry for its ‘Donate Your Data’ program. These Innovation Excellence awards recognise innovative products within the industry, with rankings based on the level of innovation and impact a product or service could have on customers.

Optus postpaid phone plans

Optus customers on eligible mobile plans can donate a portion of their data allowance to those in need each month. If you’re looking for a new phone plan and like the thought of donating your unused data, the following table shows a selection of published SIM-only postpaid Optus plans on Canstar Blue’s database, listed in order of standard monthly cost, from the lowest to highest and then by data allowance, largest to smallest. Use our comparison tool to see plans from a range of other providers.

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