The modern tech care industry is made up of companies that “take care” of technology. Tech care starts with tech support people who help you get your tech working and tech repair people who help fix issues with your tech.
When you are done with your tech it can then find a new home after being refurbished by someone in tech reuse or if the tech has reached end of life it will move on to someone in tech recycle.
A Brief History of the Modern Tech Care Industry
The modern tech care industry started in the early 2000’s when technology manufacturers (OEMs) started to end direct support for their products by dismantling their warranty support centers that had been a big part of communities throughout the country. In their wake creative entrepreneurs started to open up local independent repair shops across the country. Hundreds of repair shops opened during the early part of the decade with an explosion of thousands of locally owned and operated shops opening by 2010.
During that same period the tech refurbishing industry ramped up with a high number of tech devices being returned to the companies that sold them flowing directly into the reverse logistics industry. Soon refurbishers were buying thousands of returned devices to resell to buyers looking for a cheaper option than the high priced brand new devices being sold. Tech reuse companies began to employee tech repair people on scale while tech repair people started to refurbish devices on a smaller scale to resell themselves. A subsection of tech reuse also emerged that would refurbish the often broken LCD assembly for smartphones – buying broken units in bilk from tech repair shops to refurbish and then resell.
As the country started to consume more and more tech devices another group of bright entrepreneurs discovered that many of these tech devices were home to precious metals that if harvested in bulk would bring a nice payday. Looking for even more opportunities they found tech repair companies that were looking for affordable spare parts and so they stared mining these tech devices for parts too. When more state governments enacted laws regarding e-waste disposal these companies saw tremendous growth.
In the late 2010’s a cyclical economy had emerged where the three aspects of the tech care industry started to rely more and more on each other for business. Thus forming the nexus of the tech care industry involving tech repair, tech reuse and tech recycle.