But what if I told you that the brand new iPhone you buy in 2025 could be mostly the exact same phone you have in your pocket right now? Well, that's pretty much true.
As part of Apple's efforts to boost sustainability in their devices, the company has announced a plan to make some materials in their devices 100% recycled by 2025. In particular, Apple are planning to make all of the cobalt in their batteries, and the rare earth elements in their magnets, 100% recycled within that timeframe.
In addition, they're planning to make 100% of the tin soldering and gold plating on their own printed circuit boards recycled, too. When combined, that could make up a hefty portion of rarer materials in Apple products.
This isn't a new trend, either. According to Apple, in 2022, "over two-thirds of all aluminium, nearly three-quarters of all rare earths, and more than 95% of all tungsten in Apple products [were sourced] from 100% recycled material."
The end goal, they say, is to one day use 100% recycled or renewable materials in all of their devices. It's a noble effort.
Personally, I'm a huge fan of this. Waste from tech products is a serious issue, and this is a solution that helps to save some of the most problematic materials to source. Sure, there are always other things that could be done – nothing is perfect – but we should recognise these efforts for what they are.
So, in 2025, when you're unboxing your shiny new iPhone 17 and someone says, "It's basically the same as the old one," they just might be right.