Built in obsolescence is BS, especially when it comes to phones. Each mobile phone utilizes about 60 rare earth metals which are mined all across the globe, making ethical purchases almost impossible. Factories also pose environmental and ethical problems and no phone manufacturers can offer truly ethically-produced products. Honestly, there is no good option here, only ‘less bad’ ones.
Environmentally, cellphone manufacturers aren’t faring any better. An estimated 968TWh of energy, enough to power India for a year, went to the manufacturing of cellphones in the last decade. In 2017, used mobile phones and accessories resulted in 50 metric tons of e-waste.
In the Greenpeace Review, the other manufacturers scored as follows:
- Fairphone: B
- Apple: B-
- Microsoft C-
- Sony D+
- Google D+
- Huawei: D
- Asus: D
- Samsung: D-
- Amazon: F
Getting a green nod from Blue Angel and B Corp, the Fairphone 4 is one of the most sustainable smartphones, but it’s only available in Europe. The Fairphone utilizes recycled components and you can repair it! You can send in your old phones to the Fairphone company and they will send you a gift card.
“The Fairphone 4 is an uncompromising and beautiful phone, built for people who want an uncompromising and beautiful phone,” says CEO Eva Gouwens. “When Fairphone became profitable last year, we proved to the industry that there’s a viable market for products made with ethical and sustainable values. The Fairphone 4 aims to prove that the market for ethical and sustainable products is becoming mainstream.”
Most phones are designed to last for two years, with built-in obsolescence forcing owners to upgrade. The Teracube doubles a phone’s life to four years or more and 25% of polycarbonate used in its manufacture is recycled. Teracube has partnered with One Tree Planted so a tree is planted for every phone sold. It is repairable which makes it more sustainable and cheaper to maintain.
Coming soon will be the Teracube Thrive: A Safe Phone For Kids. We will be releasing more information on this in December, but preorders for the holiday season are available here. You get 2 months of free service for your readers with our new Teracube Wireless plan. Use promo code – CHRISTMAS (available after December 6th).