A few years ago, Samsung announced a sustainability initiative called “Galaxy Upcycling,” an effort to repurpose and reuse older smartphones. We haven’t heard much about it since then, but today at CES 2021 Samsung announced an evolution of that program called Galaxy Upcycling at home. At its core, the idea is to let people who still own older Galaxy smartphones to use them as part of their connected home rather than just leave them in a drawer (or worse, send them to a landfill).
To enable new features for these old phones, Samsung will release a software update that lets owners choose how they want to use their devices. One example the company gave was using an old phone as a. baby monitor — it can listen for a baby waking and crying and send an alert to the parent’s phone so they can go check in. Another example was using a phone to detect changes in the ambient lighting of a room and automatically turn on lights. So if you’re not home but left a pet behind, the lights can come on automatically as it gets dark outside.