Apple’s new iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and iPhone 11 Pro Max will used recycled rare earth elements in a key component, the company said on Wednesday.
Apple said it will used recycled rare earths in its “Taptic Engine,” a part that lets iPhones mimic a physical button click despite being a flat pane of glass. The part is about one-quarter of the rare earth elements inside the iPhone models.
Rare earths, a group of 17 specialized minerals, have become a flash point in trade tensions between the United States and China… Lisa Jackson, Apple’s vice president of environment, policy and social initiatives, said Apple’s use of recycled rare earths was “not related” to trade tensions but could help it maintain a steady supply. “This is one of those happy coincidences where what is good for the planet is really good for business at the same time,” Jackson told Reuters. “One of the things we talk about a lot internally, just in general, is how much more resilient this makes our supply chain.”
For now, Apple will use recycled rare earths from an outside supplier [the company declined to name the supplier], not from previously used iPhones… But Jackson said that Apple’s scale – new iPhone models are typically sell tens of millions of units per year – helped make the project economically viable. “We have essentially made a market for this entrepreneur, this innovator, who found a way to recycle rare earths,” Jackson said.
MacDailyNews Take: Two years ago, the company announced that it hopes to stop mining the Earth one day.
Sometimes when you shoot for the moon, you actually hit it, but the point is to set a high goal and even if you never reach it, you still go farther than you’d ever believe possible without something lofty to shoot for. — MacDailyNews, March 6, 2019