Samsung has expanded its Galaxy Upcycling Program through the introduction of Galaxy Upcycling at Home to help enable customers repurpose their older Galaxy smartphones.

The initiative comes as part of Samsung commitment to achieve environmental sustainability by reusing resources and extending product longevity.

Samsung's Galaxy Upcycling at Home

The Galaxy Upcycling at Home, which Samsung relaunched on Jan. 11, is providing users another option for their previous devices, which is to repurpose old Galaxy smartphones instead of just throwing them away.

Samsung's announcement, which was posted on Apr. 21, urged customers to convert their older Galaxy smartphones into a variety of Smart Home devices by installing a software update.

The software update would turn the older Galaxy smartphone into devices such as a childcare monitor, a pet care solution, or a light meter that controls the ambient lights in a room.

Samsung Galaxy Note II at the IFA 2012 Consumer Electronics Trade Fair
(Photo : Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

Additionally, the software update Samsung released includes a tweak to optimize battery usage to allow the older Galaxy smartphone to be used as a Smart Home device without worrying about the device's battery.

To do this, Samsung used an improved artificial intelligence (AI) solution so that the Galaxy smartphone's mic can accurately distinguish sounds in everyday surroundings, such as a knock on the door, a barking dog, a meowing cat, and a crying baby.

The repurposed smartphone will also be able to monitor the brightness in a room and automatically adjust the lights if the room gets darker.

"We created Galaxy Upcycling at Home to enable more people to repurpose their old devices into useful tools, allowing both Samsung and our users to be mindful of the impact we have on the environment," Sung-Koo Kim, VP of the Sustainability Management Office, Mobile Communications Business at Samsung Electronics said.

The Samsung Galaxy Upcycling at Home has opened its beta service in the U.S., the U.K., and South Korea on Wednesday, Apr. 21.

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Upcycling: Another Path to Sustainable Living

Since its relaunch, Samsung have collaborated with several organization in a bid to use the Galaxy Upcycling Program to promote sustainable living.

One such collaboration Samsung had is with Yonsei University Health System and the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness (IAPB) to use older Galaxy phones in addressing preventable visual impairments.

The move is part of Samsung's participation to United Nation's Agenda for Sustainable Development, which aims to protect the planet and improve the lives of everyone living on it.

According to Kim, Samsung strongly believes that upcycling is one of the best solutions to integrate sustainable practices into their customer's day-to-day lives.

Samsung is not the only tech company who advocates upcycling, as some have found ways to turn older Android devices into everyday devices such as a universal remote and a wireless mouse.

Users may also reuse their older smartphones as a webcam by simply installing an app, a practice proven to get better video quality than conventional web cameras.

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Written by Leigh Mercer

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