Forget smashing your old iBook Office Space-style. Just send it back to Apple, and if it isn’t ancient, you could get some sweet sweet store credit. Even if it is ancient, Apple will recycle it for you.
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. A majority of the plastics can be pelletized 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.
The new recycling program is a partnership with PowerON, an electronics trade-in company serving Fortune 500 companies. To get your Apple gift card, you input your gadget’s tech specs and see what it’s worth. Then PowerON sends you a prepaid mailing label, and voila!
Apple will even recycle computers from — GASP — other brands. That program is run by Sims Recycling Solutions, which promises to recycle your busted HP laptop from college at a domestic facility with “a zero-landfill policy and proven sustainability.”
We’re not crazy about the gift card idea, which seems to just promote speedy, thoughtless consumption of the latest iThings, but if it can help boost electronics recycling from its current 27 percent, so be it!