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The rise of tablet ownership has caused the San Diego-based ecoATM to tweak its award-winning product. The company announced that its consumer electronics buy-back kiosk will begin accepting tablet devices, in addition to the mobile phones and MP3 players it already recycles.

Approximately 18 million new tablets were sold during the fourth quarter of 2012, according to estimate data from market consulting and analytics firm Compass Intelligence in the announcement. With the steady introduction of next-generation models, ecoATM's latest upgrade seeks to satisfy the tech-savvy, always up-to-date consumer.

"Over the past year, ecoATM has quickly grown to be one of the nation's largest mobile phone resellers by helping hundreds of thousands of people recycle their old devices and pumping millions of dollars back into consumers' wallets," said Tom Tullie, chairman and CEO of ecoATM. "Now, with the proliferation of new tablets like the iPad mini, ecoATM is stepping up to help people sell their old tablets and keep pace with new technology."

Since its birth in 2008, the 300 actively deployed ecoATM kiosks have paid out "millions of dollars to hundreds of thousands of customers," all while sparing landfills from the potentially toxic materials found in many electrical componants, the company said in the announcement. The company said it finds a second life for 60 percent of the devices it collects and responsibly recycles the rest.

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