Apple is an environmental, consumer friendly tech company right? If you are the one who buys Apple products, Apple is friendly toward you, but not when you are a small company, a startup who is able to compete with Apple with technological advancement. Then Apple won’t be much friendly toward you. You may get bought, your application may get removed from the app store, and you may get booted from any platform Apple holds their power over.
As a general consumer, you don’t have to care much about this but for the people who claim Apple to be a saint, here are some reasons Apple is not. I will include sources you can access and read more about.
The company advertises their great achievements making their data-center powered by 100% renewable energy. Apple also claims that they have provisioned various tactics to reduce e-waste. Recently they have stopped providing chargers in the box with newer iphones. Big claims and big achievements.
See Apple, never ever did something without profit. And after knowing more from reputed sources, Apple lied about everything. When you read more about the “100% renewable energy” claim, this is a good old bull-crap claim from all the giants including Apple. Duke Energy, a public utility provides all of their electricity which is generated with the use of coal, nuclear energy and gas.
Read from source:
1. Analysts Call Apple Renewable Energy Claims ‘Lies’ – Carolina Journal (Don Carrington)
2. The Truth About Apple’s ‘100% Renewable’ Energy Usage – Forbes (Alex Epstein).
According to these sources, Apple not only lied, but they paid consumers and third party companies cash to give them green certification. While they claim to be world saver, earth healer, they are not. Apple is just one of the big tech giants who buy those titles from other people with money while teaching others how to get away with damaging the environment.
Apple announced that they will no longer include chargers and earpods in the box of iphones. Claiming that it would reduce e-waste in vast numbers. While many people had a laugh and trolled Apple and their practices, many Apple fans seemed to agree with the company. Twitter threads related to this topic are full of people either trolling Apple, or agreeing with Apple. And both sides seem strong. Many people are commenting that they already have tons of chargers with them.
But Apple simply does not care if you have dozens of chargers in your home, or the environment. The real reason why Apple is selling chargers separately is 5G. The cost of implementing 5G to smartphones costs more than already existing chips. Apple buys 5G modems from Qualcomm and it raises the build price of the newer iphones that uses this new modem. Qualcomm Apple deal for providing 5G modems for Apple products lasts six year and Apple has to pay fees to Qualcomm even if they don’t use their technology.
So Apple has to go with the flow for a while before making their own chip. And we yet do not know if Apple will ever come out with modems better than Qualcomm. Qualcomm 5G modem lineup will get a new model soon, which is X60. But it will be available with SD 888 chipset which will be used by flagships of 2021. I do not know if Apple can beat X60. Maybe they can, but maybe not now.
So for the rising cost of building iphones with 5G implemented also raised the manufacturing cost of iphones, and for tackling this, they started removing stuff and selling them separately. Remember, each adapter costs $40 with cable, and you have to pay $20 – $300 for earphones (basic earpod, AirPod and AirPod pro).
While Apple excluded chargers and basic accessories from the box, they on the other hand bumped up production for accessories and magsafe attachments. The “Save the environment” tag helps them to do things that are unconventional and problematic for both the users, and the environment while boosting their profits with the sale of accessories and products. And loyal fans are just guards for their reputation when they continue being dishonest and greedy.
If Apple wants to reduce e-waste, they should stop selling their own connector and add USB-C to the iphones. They already added USB-C to newer ipads, so it is not impossible to do the same for iphones. People have more USB-C powered devices than iphones. Macbooks, many newer laptops, almost every latest Android powered device has USB-C for power delivery. People can use the same type of cable across all other devices except iphones.
Read: How Apple’s accessories business will continue fueling revenue growth (Business Insider)
Read: As iPhone sales level off, Apple has doubled its revenue from accessories since 2015 (Business Insider).
Also, if you are upgrading from iphone 10 to iphone 12, the adapter connects with USB-C and not USB at the end. So you have to buy a new charger for your device which profits Apple. Every accessory companies make for Apple devices, Apple takes a licensing fee. Tons of profit comes from these fees, and Apple does not want to lose them. Apple simply does not care about what’s best for reducing e-waste.
I would first like to discuss recycling. Recycling does not reduce e-waste. It creates more problems than solving them.
According to iFixit, only 20% e-wastes are collected globally and 30% from that collected waste cannot be recovered when recycling. So even with all the claim, effort and awareness, recycling is not an effective solution to the e-waste problem.
Now, Apple products are hard to repair, costly to upgrade and they try to stop third party repairs by force. Many of the Apple products are designed to end up in trash and replaced with the newer devices. Despite screaming of fanboys claiming iphones lasts longer, people in the US switch phones within two years. Most of the phone ends up in trash and then turns into e-waste.
You may be one of the lucky people who did not get scammed or overcharged by the Apple geniuses. It’s actually not their fault, but what Apple wants. Apple trains their geniuses poorly and tells them to suggest a full upgrade even if your phone has small problems. Instead of fixing your slightly misplaced wire, they may suggest you are full component change. Instead of fixing your broken display, they may suggest you upgrade to newer models.
Watch: Apple under fire for allegations of controversial business practices (CBS News Int.)
Watch: Apple quoted $475 charge for an unplugged battery (Louis Rossman)
Read: The big apple scam (ProBono)
Read: Apple Genius Bar shows a worker overestimating the price of a repair for a darkened screen and that the ‘customer’ may as well buy a new computer for the cost of fixing the old one (Daily Mail UK).
Apple contributes to e-waste just like others do by disabling users to upgrade and repair their product and keep them for a long time. If Apple really wants to save nature, make the product reparable and usable for a long time.
Apple is one of the monopolistic companies in the US that do not love competition that much. Unless it’s a giant and direct competitor, Apple will acquire and grasp any company that they see as a competition. To be honest this is the same for every big tech company, even it is true for some FOSS based businesses too. The most monopolistic business in the US is facebook that acquires any company that competes with its products. Apple is not that villainous right? Or are they?
The company Beats By Dr. Dre was bought by Apple in 2014 and became a subsidiary. Apple squeezed every innovative idea from Beats and used them to make Apple’s own products. Airpod pro, Airpod Max is based on the engineering from Beats. They let Beats die slowly while innovations. While Apple never refreshed the pro Beats headphones, they made their own over the ear headphones. Apple do not want something that competes with their own products.
You know how music worked back then in itunes? You had to buy each album. While people could keep the music as long as they wished, subscription based streaming services like Spotify were being favoured by the users. In 2014, Beats Music was out with unique features like playlists made by artists. It was a great approach and Beats Music was becoming a top contender of Spotify. Apple first denied that they will shut down Beats Music but only to prove that they lied later. In November 2015, Apple shutdown Beats Music and started promoting Apple music by giving users choice to move preferences.
Part of their monopolistic behaviour, Apple tends to remove any app they don’t like even if they don’t break any App Store guideline. Devs with applications that compete with Apple’s own apps saw their apps getting removed, denied updates, lost under searches and similar issues. When you search with a keyword that matches any app Apple has developed, they will show it in top results and pull other apps to the bottom of the list.
They removed wikileaks and I do not know why, they remove many screen time tracking apps and tons of other applications. Apple is pretty monopolistic with their own platforms.
While as a consumer, you can still continue using products, and you alone won’t make any difference. Apple has one of the most loyal user-bases and can manipulate everything that comes to you as a general consumer or audience. What we should do is ask Apple to be transparent and stop lying about bull-craps like being 100% green and making environmental change by providing consumers less and making profit by selling those separately.