As new updates frequently come and technology advances, people tend to upgrade their computers and laptops. And that has only one downside, which is – you’re stuck with the old one! Moreover, the dangerous metals and chemicals in computers make it a bad idea just to toss them in the garbage. The amount of e-waste generated each year is beyond our imagination. It is not only harmful to the environment, but it can also have adverse health effects on humans.
The only solution to this is finding new ways to upcycle our devices. It also gives purpose to them and keeps them out of the trash bin.
Here are four ways to repurpose an old laptop/computer.
- Retrofit to a Chromebook
We might need a fully-functional laptop with new features for our tasks, but you might have a family member that can use just the basic features. For example, a child who needs to stream videos, watch movies, play games, research/study on the internet, or attend virtual classes. Chromebooks can be a great alternative, but it can be difficult. So let someone use your laptop as a makeshift Chromebook.
- Create a Digital Photo Frame
DIYs have become people’s favorite pastime, and this could be your next project. A serious DIY-er would love to strip down their laptop to its bare parts and turn it into something unique.
First, create a digital photo frame by making use of the high-resolution screen of the device. Remove all the plastic casing and extra parts, and fit the laptop circuitry with the LCD in a shadow box. The laptop’s LCD will be in front, and the hard drive parts can be mounted to the back. You can choose from a variety of tutorials that guide you on the steps. Once the frame is set up, you may use varied programs to display your favorite photos. You can even set the timing for the display of each photo, so it is highly customizable.
- Build a Home Media Center
The idea is to put two devices to work. First, you can use your laptop as a media center that serves your TV. This will enable you to directly connect everything from recording broadcast TV stations to Netflix shows on the big screen. A simple HDMI cord can help you enjoy everything on the big screen. This can unlock a wide range of streaming services and get you access to region-restricted content through a VPN. You might need an adapter to connect to the HDMI port if you’re using Apple. It is essential to understand that older devices could run slower. You may uninstall unused software and programs or even upgrade to an SSD from a hard drive to speed up the streaming.
- Convert into a Network Attached Storage System (NAS)
A NAS system can be helpful when you need ways to store data and share files will all the computers that are connected to your network. It is excellent if you need additional storage and when multiple people on your network need access to files. The contents of the drive will be accessible on all your devices – tablets, phones, or other PCs. First, you need to set up a NAS application on your laptop. Download the application, create a bootable drive with a USB, restart the computer, and boot it using the bootable drive. Once the installation is done, you will find a server interface on the screen where you can set your username and password, enabling you to connect with the other devices.
The uses of an unused laptop could be many – from turning it into a webcam, wireless network, or even a remote control. But the best thing is you can get minor repairs done to make it more useful. If you’re looking for a trusted repair service, Avie Pros can help you!