Apple Just Recovered 1 Tonne Of Gold Worth $40 Mn From Old iPhones, iPads!

Helping the environment pays back — in Apple’s case, it has turned to the tune of millions. Yes, the Apple’s recycling efforts are paying off and paying off well.


The tech company says it recovered 2,204 pounds (more than a ton) of gold from recycled iPhones, iPads and Macs last year, or $40 million worth of precious metals, according to Apple’s environmental responsibility report.

Translation: 2,66,36,18,000 in Indian rupees!

And along came huge chunks of silver (3,000 kgs), copper (13,39,622 kgs), and zinc (1,04,78,437 kgs) from old devices like iPhones, iPads, and Macs.

Gold and copper are present in iPhone camera technology, while cobalt and lithium are used in batteries. Silver is deployed in motherboards. Each iPhone, for instance, contains approximately 25 milligrams of gold worth about $1, according to a Forbes report.


These valuable materials were reclaimed through the Apple Renew scheme, which lets customers hand in their worn-out Apple devices(Old Phones) in exchange for money off or for future Apple purchases.

The company, however, won’t be taking the fortune to a bank. Instead, it plans to reuse the materials for its new products in a bid to prevent mining of resources. And of course, there will be financial gains to be reaped from the effort as well as Apple will no longer have to procure gold for its iPhone.


Also, according to New York Gold Spot Price, one kg of top quality gold is currently priced at $39,792.

That’s Rs. 26,43,233. Per kg. Whoa!

What’s even better is that the task of recovering the material has been assigned to Liam – Apple’s recently invented robot that was unveiled at the company’s spring event. ‘Liam’ robots, are designed to take apart old Apple devices while detecting and separating their valuable elements.

Watch The Video: Liam – An Innovation Story

According to their report,

Existing recycling techniques, like shredding, only recover a few kinds of materials and often diminish their quality. So we invented Liam, a line of robots designed to disassemble 1.2 million phones a year, sorting all their high-quality components and reducing the need to mine more resources from the earth.


Electronics companies don’t put gold in their devices just to be extravagant – but the metal is used in computer components because it’s an excellent conductor, and doesn’t tend to corrode or oxidise in the same way as copper or aluminium.

This is, well, pure gold!

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