Uses for LOTS of old iPads?

My office is getting rid of a lot of old iPad 3s (iPads 3?). Does anyone have any ideas for what I could do with a bunch of them? I grabbed a few just to have backups for my daughter’s poorly treated iPad Air and some single iPad projects, but I could probably grab another dozen or two if I have a use for them. So any ideas?

This is a stretch but could the Red Cross make use of them?

That’s the first iPad with a Retina screen. Digital frames? Put one in the kitchen for recipes? There used to be a cool iPad refrigerator mount. I still use my 3 for reading fiction and watching videos/movies.


The iPad 3 won’t run the latest version of the OS, or the latest apps, so you’ll find many avenues closed for an iPad released 10 years ago with a dock connector (I’m surprised you can charge them) event browsing the web will struggle.

It may be that you can find something to do with it, but you’re going to be very limited.


If you have 52 of them you could make a giant deck of playing cards.


Like @Medievalist I was thinking some kind of art installation using them as digital frames. You’ll probably need to keep them constantly plugged in - not expecting those batteries to be in great shape. You’ll need a lot of USB cables with 30 pin connectors :slight_smile:

Possibly more hassle than value in the end?


Maybe you could use some for practising your dismantling skills? I personally love taking things apart!

I still get about six hours of movie playback on mine, and it’s been hard-used. No, newer apps don’t run, but there’s a lot you can do with just Safari and the Apple system apps. I hate to see functional technology sent to a land-fill. Do use them for something! Heck, you could do something like make an in-house video intercom system, even. Mount them on walls near an outlet for a local music system or stream podcasts and audio books from therm.


What about Classmates?
Not every Child has the luck to be able to afford the latest versions of technology, and an iPad3 is still an usable item for the internet, and a lot of apps.
A lot of apps, that are not allowing the iPadOS Version installed on those iPads for the current app versions, still have the latest running version available over the App-Store.
I still use an iPad2, now some 12 years (IIRC) old, and it is still doing a very good job in the areas I use it for.

And even if you don’t find a good place to use them yourself, there are organizations like the RedCross, that could use them somewhere, or raising some money by selling them back to Apple.

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Thanks for the ideas, and keep them coming!

We did already check with some local schools, but I’ll look into other nonprofits & maybe individual families. At least USB cables aren’t a concern, there is a pile of maybe 100 or so? (There is also a large iPad charging cart that they were all stored in, but I want nothing to do with that!).

In updating them, I’m glad at least they’re ios9 - so they keyboard shows what case it is using! They were all on 8 when I got them, which was a jarring experience.

Do check with the public library too.I used to teach in a classroom with a cart like that with iPads… Really super to use with images instead of a screen, because students could see details with high res imagres.

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