Guide to Sourcing Digital Devices

Pros and Cons of Different Approaches

Crowdfunding and crowdsourcing digital devices are common methods used by councils and other organisations that need to source devices for local residents to help them get online. Both approaches have advantages and disadvantages.


Pros Cons
  • Simpler for councils to set up and manage by themselves.
  • Can be a good way of supplementing existing funding or financing one-off projects.
  • Avoids issues relating to the refurbishment of donated devices.
  • May be politically controversial – residents may have negative views on councils seeking to fund something that, in their eyes, should be a core taxpayer-funded council service.
  • You may have to pay fees to a crowdfunding platform



Pros Cons
  • A great way to tackle device poverty and may help to build a sense of community.
  • Supports positive environmental practices by giving devices a second life. 
  • Involves complex processes and logistics so you may need to use external providers to help deliver the scheme.
  • The level of functionality of the donated devices may not be suitable for the intended beneficiaries.
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