The impending release of the iPhone 6 (still over a week away) has already attracted disciples out the front of Sydney’s Apple store.
Indeed whenever the technology behemoth releases a new product, the ensuing scenes are almost biblical. People triumphantly exit the store clutching their new iWhatever as though they’ve just reached the front of the bread line. There are tears when the product sells out in the first few hours.
All this, of course, is par for the course. Like magpies, we can’t wait to get our claws on everything shiny and new.
I readily admit, I am irritated by the people I see taking pictures of the store. I am irritated by the queues of people positively desperate to spend around $1,000 on a phone, despite a fully functioning iPhone 5s in their pocket.
Above all else, I find the Apple hysteria disturbing.
But, this isn’t simply a case of decreeing ‘bar humbug’ on Apple. (I myself own an iPhone and am writing this rant on an iMac). This rant is based on an inconvenient home truth.
Outside the citadel walls, far from any towering glass buildings with glistening fruits for logos, are the less glamorous receptacles of our obsession with the shiny and new: the landfills. The massive holes in the ground, where we tightly compress our garbage into the earth.
As ABS data attests, e-waste is one of the fastest growing waste types.
Very little of the increasing amount of e-waste generated in Australia is being recycled, and discarded mobile phones in particular are the most likely electrical products to make it into landfill.
Alongside the constant drive to have the newest and latest products is the inevitable wastage of the “old” products they supersede.
For Apple die-hards, you’ll no-doubt be eager to spend a night on the pavement waiting to get your fingers on the iPhone 6 when it’s officially released next week.
For those considering purchasing an iPhone for the first time, sure – get the latest version. Or perhaps you’ve got a first or second generation and it’s slowing down – fair enough, upgrade.
If however you’ve been using (and enjoying) a current version iPhone, why replace something that ain’t broke?
Just some food for thought…
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