Apple commits to recycling products for free

Apple commits to recycling products for free

Summary: Apple has vowed its commitment to the environment on a new section of its website, announcing it will recycle any Apple product at no charge.

TOPICS: Apple, Hardware

Apple is offering free recycling of all its used products and vowing to power all of its stores, offices, and data centres with renewable energy to reduce the pollution caused by its devices and online services.

The iPhone and iPad maker is detailing its efforts to cultivate a greener Apple with an environmental section on the company's website that debuted on Monday.

"When you recycle with Apple your used equipment is disassembled, and key components that can be reused are removed. Glass and metal can be reprocessed for use in new products," Apple explains on its website.

"A majority of the plastics can be pelletised into a raw secondary material. With materials reprocessing and component reuse, Apple often achieves a 90 percent recovery rate by weight of the original product."

Among other things, the company is increasing its reliance on solar and wind power, while sending less electronic junk to landfills.

Apple had already been distributing cards at some of its stores in exchange for iPhones and iPods with some resell value.

Now, all of the company's stores will recycle any Apple product at no charge. Gift cards won't be handed out for all recycled products.

Apple's commitment to helping the environment began in 2005 when the company launched an iPod recycling program where it rewarded customers with a 10 percent discount to buy a new iPod if they handed in their old one. Soon after, it extended that recycling program to include computers — Macs or PCs. 

Topics: Apple, Hardware


Since completing a degree in journalism, Aimee has had her fair share of covering various topics, including business, retail, manufacturing, and travel. She continues to expand her repertoire as a tech journalist with ZDNet.

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  • Re: Apple commits to recycling products for free....

    Free? Well in reality Apple won't be exactly giving anything away. Yes they will be offering a service to the customer but for Apple in many cases it will be a 'win win' situation as many more 'refurbished' products will surface at premium prices.

    Being not often critical of Apple as I use their products. In this case however their is no doubt the hidden agenda to generate more profit
    • Yup.

      Apple doesn't do anything for free unless they have a way to make a profit.
  • If you think Apple is making money off this you're nuts.

    Do you really think a device someone is willing to GIVE back to Apple is any way refurbish-able? The fact is that electronics recycling is almost never profitable. The components and raw materials are rarely worth than the costs of disassembly, let alone shipping or handling. Apple products may be an exception due to all that comercially-viable aluminum and arsenic-free glass, but it's far from lucrative. Electronics in our landfills is such a BAD thing that we should be thrilled Apple, and others especially Gazelle, are willing to provide this low-value, if not money-losing, service.
    • It was worth $600 when you bought it

      Now you are supposed to give it back for free? I have two better ideas. Sell it on ebay. Trade it in with MS. They are giving up to $200 on iOS devices.
  • And this is news?

    I can drop off any electronics at my local Staples store and they will "recycle" it. Just fill out a form [for certain items] - otherwise nothing. And of course it is free.
    [Maybe Apple charged for recycling at some stores.]