O2 Recycle has paid £100m to customers since 2009

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Operator has received more than 1.4 million gadgets since the scheme’s launch nearly five years ago, with over 420,000 devices recycled last year alone

O2 has revealed it has paid out £100 million to customers and received more than 1.4 million devices since the launch of O2 Recycle in 2009.

The scheme is available to both O2 and non-O2 customers, offering cash payments of up to £260 for recycled gadgets such as mobile phones, tablets, wearables, MP3 players, handheld consoles, digital cameras and SatNavs.

The mobile operator said that if it was to stack all these devices it has received on top of each other, they would reach a height of 135 miles – the same distance to go to Space and back.

Additionally, through this recycling, 142,000kg of waste has been removed from landfill, the equivalent of 12 London Routemaster buses.

Last year along, more than 420,000 devices were recycled, with various models across the Apple iPhone range accounting for 41 per cent of that total – making it the most common gadget to go through O2’s system.

The operator added since its launch, O2 Recycle has paid out to over 1,200 businesses, with many of them choosing to donate all money received from recycled devices directly to O2’a Think Big youth initiatives. So far, O2 Recycle has raised £3 million for these, which funds social action projects by 13-25 year olds in the UK.

Geographically, Bristol is the top city in terms of the number of O2 customers recycling a device when visiting a store, with one in every 82 doing so, followed by Sheffield (one in 108) and Glasgow and Birmingham (both one in 114). London is 11th on the list, with one in 155.

O2 UK CEO Ronan Dunne said: “When we launched O2 Recycle in 2009, our ambition was to offer people a simple, environmentally friendly way of disposing of their old tech, and to reward them for doing so by giving them money back, which is why we’re proud to have reached this landmark figure.

“Furthermore, O2 Recycle not only gives customers money back for recycling their unwanted gadgets, it also helps to support young people, with money raised through O2 Recycle helping to fund social impact projects in local communities.”

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