While many of us just pay for a phone and data as part of the day to day, that’s not the case for everyone, and so Optus is turning to the community for a little help.
If you’ve upgraded your phone in recent years, there’s a good chance you have an extra sitting in a drawer somewhere, because you might have kept the previous model. It’s possible you’ve thought of handing it to someone else or maybe even selling it, but if it’s sitting there gathering dust, and if you’re an Optus customer, there may be something charitable you can do with it: hand it on to someone else.
This week, the telco has announced that it will be giving prepaid SIMs alongside donated phones to those in need, providing unlimited calls and SMS, as well as data allowances donated from Optus customers that they may not need.
You might have plenty of data gone unused from all that time at home during WFH, and if you’re an Optus customer, you can donate it to Optus’ donation pool. At the end of a month, the data is rounded up and split between those who need it, with Optus adding to it, as well.
Optus’ Donate Your Data program runs across several charities, including Sydney Children’s Hospitals Foundation, The Salvation Army, The Smith Family, and others, and this year will cover not just the data, but also phones, working with Good360 to send old phones to new homes.
“Optus is proud to be working with our customers to enable Australians in need to power their potential by providing them with the essentials required to thrive in a digital world,” said Matt Williams, Managing Director for Optus in Australia.
“We believe all Australians should be able to stay connected,” he said. “By working with Good360, we are enacting real change in our communities.”
The addition will mean Optus customers with a spare phone can donate it to the “Donate Your Device” side of the program, but only Optus customers. It’s not something that will work with anyone on an Optus virtual operator, the company told Pickr, and the phones need to be unlocked and factory reset before sending them in.
Optus also noted the devices have to be 4G or 5G capable, with iPhone models starting from the iPhone 8 and higher, with older models — such as the iPhone 7 — not accepted. It’s a similar story with Android models, with the cut-off appearing to be the Galaxy S8 and higher for Samsung, and the Pixel 3/3 XL and higher for Google, with no Pixel 2 or original Pixel part of the program.
There is a list of other models that will be accepted, though, so if you’re thinking your old device would be better in the hands of someone more needing, you might want to check that and see if it’ll be accepted.