10 Great Uses for an Outdated Android Tablet

Do you have an Android tablet lying around in your home or office? As we move from one generation of technology into another, older devices keep piling up. Tablets are somewhat dated right now. With Windows 10 available on ultra-portable hybrid devices, most manufacturers stopped making Android tablets. So, if you have such a tablet lying around, here are a few areas where your old Android tablet will still find purpose.

Before you proceed, you might want to check out this article on how you can clean up your old Android tablet and make it functional again.

1. As a wireless trackpad

If you got an HTPC or a Home Theatre Personal Computer, then you can use it as a trackpad or as a remote control for your PC. There is an app called Unified Remote that allows your tablet to work as a remote control for your Windows PC. Signals can be sent either via Bluetooth or via Wi-Fi.

Unified Remote also comes with app-specific controls. So, you can have controls dedicated to Windows Media Player or VLC Media Player. It can also be used for giving presentations or slideshows. You also need to install a server-side software on your PC to make it work.

Another alternative is TeamViewer. This will allow you to control your PC from your tablet, mirror your PC’s screen to your tablet, or even stream audio or video. TeamViewer is completely free whereas unified remote is a freemium product.

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2. As a remote computer terminal

TeamViewer is more of a remote desktop access. It provides complete access to your PC as if you were sitting at your PC. You can also use Microsoft’s Remote Desktop Client if you are on the same network as that of your PC. With Remote Desktop, you do not have to do anything extra on your PC and connecting is a breeze.

Another alternative is using Chrome Remote Desktop. TeamViewer and Chrome Remote Desktop, both require companion apps to be set up on the PC before you proceed.

3. As a universal smart remote

Got a lot of smart devices in your house – Philips Hue, Nest Thermostat, or any other Smart TV? You can easily load up the companion apps for those devices on your tablet and use your tablet as a single remote.

You can also use your tablet to stream to your TV. Chromecast or DNLA dongles are quite inexpensive and you can hook them up to your TV using HDMI. Then you can easily stream videos to your TV over Wi-Fi. This includes watching Netflix or Amazon Prime Videos on the big screen.

You can go one step further and set up a media server using Plex. Plex media server is available free of cost. You can easily stream your local content to your TV.

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4. Use it as a surveillance camera

If your tablet comes with a decent camera, you can use it as a full-time surveillance camera for your home. You will have to keep it plugged in always so that it does not run out of juice. A simple charger with low amperage that will not heat up the tablet will suffice.

You will also have to keep it connected to the internet always. Once you have set up the device, you can then install IP Webcam. Set it up and then you can access the device’s camera from any web browser.

5. As a full-time video conferencing station

An old tablet can be a good option for the permanent access point for virtual face-to-face communications. You can have Skype, Google Duo, Hangouts or any platform of your choice installed on your tablet. Then you can put it in a dock on the desk or the conference room table and you have a dedicated video calling device.

6. As a Dedicated eBook reader

The tablet form factor is still used in eBook readers. So, if you are an avid eBook reader, you can use your tablet as an eBook reading device. Lithium is a great ePub reading app. You can also install OverDrive, Amazon Kindle and Nook to get books.

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7. As a Digital Photo Frame

Use any gallery app, run a slideshow and keep the tablet connected to AC power. That’s all you need to do to use your tablet as a digital photo frame. You can also use a memory card to store the photo, have the photos resized and compressed so that you can fit more on to the local storage as you set up the digital photo frame.
8. As a clock or calendar

Timely and Cal app by Any.do are great options to use your tablet as a high-tech calendar or clock.

9. Retro gaming device

Android has a bunch of emulation software for older consoles. An old android tablet is not expected to run state of the art games, but you can obviously play Pac man or Mario on your tablet.

10. As an emergency device.

Finally, you can keep your tablet as an emergency device to call emergency numbers. You can have a cheap calling plan, keep the device charged and in an easily accessible place to make calls when needed. You can also pin the emergency contacts to your home screen.

So, here are 10 options in which you can use to breathe new life into your old tablet. Is there anything else that you use your old tablet for, then let us know in the comments below.

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