Apple uses robotics for ecological purposes
Daisy, the Apple Recycler Robot
Apple’s robot answers to the sweet name of Daisy. An indisputable reference to the environment.
While there are 5,000 Apple Stores worldwide, the company wants to quadruple the number of its recycling sites. For the moment, we only count their presence in the United States and the Netherlands.*
The recovered iPhones are sent to these workshops. Daisy then disassembles them to separate the functional parts and reuse them later.
In numbers, it processes more than 7.8 million refurbished Apple devices, the equivalent of more than 48,000 metric tons of electronic waste. Huge figures achieved thanks to this recycling robot. Daisy is indeed able to disassemble 1.2 million devices per year or 200 devices per hour.
Apple, a green business?
It’s in this environmental and ecological perspective that Lisa Jackson, Apple’s Vice President of Environment, Policy and Social Initiatives, said, “Advanced recycling must be an integral part of the supply chain, and Apple is paving the way for the whole industry.”
For Apple, this is an opportunity to recover raw materials such as cobalt or tin. The company is the first to have introduced a closed loop recycling system. In addition, the firm almost reduced its carbon footprint by half in the production of electronic devices.
In order to improve its sorting, disassembly, and grinding techniques, Apple has decided to invest in a robotics and deep learning laboratory to become more efficient and faster in the processing of refurbished equipment. This laboratory brings together experts composed of engineers employed at Apple and academics.
It has also launched a battery recycling and replacement program for all its products.
Apple has definitely improved its resource utilization performance over the previous year. The brand is committed to the environment and wants to let it be known.
But why this sudden craze for the environment?
Far be it from us to doubt the good faith of this computer giant. Its products are always available and in stores. However, it’s important to remember that Apple’s efforts come at a time when suspicions of planned obsolescence have undermined the public’s confidence in the company.
The Italian competition regulator has recently condemned Apple and Samsung companies for this reason. It remains to be seen if this case, which dates from October 2018, can make international jurisprudence…
* (If you do not live in these two countries, you can also participate in this major recycling project. Simply bring your iPhone back to an Apple Store or follow the return procedure on the brand’s website.)