Greenpeace slams Daisy, Apple’s new iPhone recycling robot

“Apple is out with its 2018 Environmental Responsibility Report,” Mark Sullivan reports for Fast Company, “and in it is news of a new iPhone disassembly robot named Daisy that can rip apart 200 iPhones in an hour to get to the reusable and recyclable parts. (Daisy is an upgraded version of Apple’s first such robot, 2016’s Liam.)”

“Greenpeace quickly released a statement saying, in effect, that Apple should focus its green energies on making iPhones more repairable in the first place, so that they last longer and don’t show up in landfills quite so soon,” Sullivan reports. “Greenpeace senior analyst Gary Cook wrote: ‘Rather than another recycling robot, what is most needed from Apple is an indication that the company is embracing one of its greatest opportunities to reduce its environmental impact: repairable and upgradeable product design. This would keep its devices in use far longer, delaying the day when they’d need to be disassembled by Daisy.'”

Daisy, Apple’s latest innovation in material recovery, can disassemble nine different iPhone models to recover valuable materials that traditional recyclers cannot.
Daisy, Apple’s latest innovation in material recovery, can disassemble nine different iPhone models to recover valuable materials that traditional recyclers cannot.

Sullivan reports, “Cook cited the three- to four-week wait times for iPhone battery replacements at Apple retail stores earlier this year as proof that customers want to repair rather than replace their iThings.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Disingenuous. We all know why iPhone battery replacement appointments are overbooked. So Greenpeace’s “proof” is no proof at all.

Proof that people don’t want even more repairability than Apple already offers: 1.3+ billion iOS devices sold to date and counting.

Apple adds Earth Day donations to trade-in and recycling program; reveals new iPhone recycling robot named ‘Daisy’ – April 19, 2018
iPhone X has less environmental impact than any other Apple product – September 29, 2017
Greenpeace: Apple again the world’s most environmentally friendly tech company – January 10, 2017
Greenpeace: Apple is tech’s greenest – May 15, 2015
Greenpeace: Apple leading the way in creating a greener, more sustainable internet – April 2, 2014
Greenpeace praises Apple for reducing use of conflict minerals
– February 13, 2014


  1. Greenpeace is becoming the Consumer Reports of environmental issues… So let me get this right lets spend money delaying when an iPhone goes to a landfill instead of recycling them earlier? Makes sense – NOT

  2. MDN take: “Proof that people don’t want even more repairability than Apple already offers: 1.3+ billion iOS devices sold to date and counting.”

    Talk about disingenuous! Repairability or lack thereof is NOT the deciding factor for buying an iDevice, any more than Greenpeace’s claiming battery replacement backlog is evidence they want repairability!

    When you factor in sealed-in, un-upgradeable desktop Macs (never mind laptops), which DO NOT require space or weight savings to the extreme Apple has pushed to), it is obvious that Apple’s intention is locking users to their service and support. Service and support should NEVER be a primary revenue stream, it’s like a city relying on speeding tickets as part of their primary revenue.

    Like the Mac Pro fiasco, it proves that a dangerous thing has happened at Apple: the beancounters, not the innovators or the forward-thinkers, are now in charge.

    1. There exists a 10 inch screen portable device with a refresh rate of up to 120Hz, faster than many other devices made. What’s interesting is, because it’s not a Mac Mini or a Mac Pro, it’s not innovative or forward thinking. There exists a consumer device that can read your face so accurately and so quickly, that it can be used for accurate facial tracking. There’s currently not another shipping product that offers a similarly high quality option.

      “Repairability or lack therof is NOT the deciding factor for buying an iDevice”
      I think you’re making their point very well. It really is NOT a deciding factor. In fact, with the release of each new iPhone iFixit does their repairability scores, places it at 1 or 2, and Apple goes on to sell a record number of that device. Proving, as you said, that no one… or at best a VERY VERY FEW value “repairability” over “what this thing does for me”.

  3. I think Greenpeace should stick to what they do in the water but not running a business that would not survive based on upgrading chips on mother boards and think you get new functions and features. These people would still complain about the price. Show many companies even think like that and can offer any product like that is electronically.

  4. “delaying the day when they’d need to be disassembled by Daisy.’”
    Where they won’t show up in landfills at al… oh, wait. Wait-a-minute… well, I want them to not end up in landfills but because of MY no landfill reason, not YOUR no landfill reason.

  5. Shouldn’t they be out on their big ship blowing smoke and burning thousands of gallons of diesel to allegedly intimidate our friends of the “Asian Persuasion” from harvesting whales?
    Still love the episode of Southpark where they rip the hell out of the “Whale Wars” idiots.
    I believe the episode was titled “Whale Whores”

  6. It’s sad that you can’t change chips and just get new features like that. It’s like saying that everything is the same size and innovation n doesn’t matter. Reducing by the size and building multi components more efficient including cpu, battery design and other chips matter including display.

  7. iPhones are very well built and things that fail like the home button are being replaced. iPhones are handed down sometimes several years, extending their life. Most android junk ends up in landfills in just a few years, if not months.

  8. It’s always going to be a no-win situation for whatever Apple does despite nearly every other tech or computer company doing similar things to harm the environment. I definitely think replaceable batteries are fine but I don’t think MOST people keep their smartphones long enough for the battery to have a need to be replaced. Don’t the majority of consumers replace their smartphones every couple of years just to get newer features?

  9. i travel ia bit, came back from Malaysia and Cambodia a few months back. I see people repairing phones in dinky dusty stands.
    I was just wondering whether a plane with hundreds of passengers with lithium battery phones are safe if some are repaired by un-certified techs…

    imagine if iphones were way easier to repair and millions have phones with uncertified components. Some repair shops actually buy factory rejected components for repair or components ripped out of old phones etc….

  10. “Greenpeace chief anal cyst Gary Cook writes…”

    I work so hard to reduce our impact on the environment — and I completely oppose Greenpeace — because they make people think that all environmentalists are ninnys.

    Shut up and go home, anal-cyst.

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