Three out of every four people added that they don't even think about recycling their devices and nearly half were unaware that it is even possible to do so.
The survey was based on interviews with 6,500 people in 13 countries including
People on average have each owned around five phones, very few of these are being recycled once they are no longer used. Yet very few old devices, 4%, are being thrown into landfill. Instead the majority, 44%, are simply being kept at homes never used. Others are giving their mobiles another life in different ways, one quarter are passing on their old phones to friends or family, and 16% of people are selling their used devices particularly in emerging markets.
The survey showed that one of the main reasons why so few people recycle their mobile phones is because they simply don't know that it is possible to do so. Globally, half of those surveyed didn't know phones could be recycled like this, with awareness lowest in
Using the best recycling technology nothing is wasted. Between 65 - 80 per cent of a Nokia device can be recycled. Plastics that can't be recycled are burnt to provide energy for the recycling process, and other materials are ground up into chips and used as construction materials or for building roads. In this way nothing has to go to landfill, notes Nokia.
Many people interviewed for the survey, even if they were aware that a device could be recycled, did not know how to go about doing this. Two thirds said they did not know how to recycle an unwanted device and 71% were unaware of where to do this.
Nokia has collection points for unwanted mobile devices in 85 countries around the world, the largest voluntary scheme in the mobile industry. People can drop off their old devices at Nokia stores and almost 5,000 Nokia Care Centers. To find their nearest take back point people can visit www.nokia.com/werecycle.
Responding to the survey findings Nokia is developing a series of campaigns and activities to give people more information on why, how and where to recycle their old and unwanted devices, chargers and mobile accessories. The company is also expanding its global take-back program by adding many more collection bins and promoting these in store to raise greater awareness.