Does that Walkman walk no more, or is the original PlayStation now a doorstop? Starting next month, Sony Corp. will take them back at 75 recycling stations around the country.
The electronics and entertainment company has previously accepted products for recycling at a few places. The initiative announced Thursday greatly expands the number of locations.
Other makers of computers and electronics, like Apple Inc., Dell Inc. and Hewlett-Packard Co., have their own recycling programs, which generally rely on customers mailing in their old gear. Sony is the first to partner with trash-hauler Waste Management Inc., which has a network of recycling drop-off centers.
The centers will accept any Sony or Sony Ericsson-branded gadgets for free, and other brands for a fee.
The 75 stations available starting Sept. 15 are spread unevenly over the country, with 17 stations in California and 19 in Minnesota but none in 32 states. Eight states, including New York, have only one station each.
Sony and Waste Management plan to double the number of drop-off centers within a year, with the aim of having at least one in every state. Ultimately, the goal is to have a center within 20 miles of 95 percent of the U.S. population.
In the meantime, it will be possible to ship used Sony products to some of the recycling locations at the customers' expense.
"Through the Take Back Recycling Program, our customers will know that their Sony products will be recycled in an environmentally responsible manner," said Stan Glasgow, president and chief operating officer of Sony Electronics, in a statement.