Heck, just not upgrading your phone every 2 years would have a bigger impact, since most of a phone’s emissions happen during production. Apple themselves say that each iPhone 12 will produce 70kg (154lb) of CO2 during its lifetime, 83% of that during production and only 14% during use.
A phone battery at 5V and 2500mAh (probably about the average) is approximately 12.5Wh of energy storage. Even if you used the entire battery every day, we’re talking 4kW per year, costing ~60¢ in the US.
Your phone battery could only power a standard 60W incandescent lightbulb for 12 minutes, but powers your phone for hours. That’s amazing!
*in the physics sense
Which is why nobody uses incandescent bulbs anymore.
You can get the same amount of light for 1/5 of that power with LEDs, i.e. your phone could power that amount of light for an hour.
Yeah, 'kids these days' just get nichrome wire instead of a good old light bulb. :)
There was an article I read a while back (can't find it at the moment) that involved someone modifying a 'modern' EZ-Bake oven to be powered off a USB-C PD charger. The future we live in!
Even a simple ability to swap your phone's battery for a new one would reduce a lot of emissions. But they want you to spend $$$ on new stuff, so they make it hard for you to fix. And on laptops, soldered SSDs, soldered RAM, non-swappable batteries. You HAVE to buy a new PC even if you just want a little more hard disk space.
But those customers have a worthless opinion.
And starting with the 12, Apple now requires authorized repair shops to use heat to open the phone, something that was previously only done for iPads and was prone to causing repair problems for the casual tinkerer.
They haven't gone out of their way to make replacing batteries difficult, but it is more difficult than it used to be before phones were waterproof and tightly packaged.
Sure, it requires special tools, but isn't a battery change on a quartz watch pretty easy? I think the going price for a battery change is like 10€. There can't be that much hard work involved with pricing like that.
My watch (Timex) does not require special tools in order to replace the battery, and it's waterproof, small, and lightweight.
I unscrew four small screws on the back using the same screwdriver I've used for years to tighten the screws on my eyeglasses. Pop in the replacement coin cell battery, and screw it back together.
It takes about two minutes and costs about $5.
It can be said about iPhones. I like having a thin, light and watertight phone. If the cost of that is limited avenues for servicing, that’s a tradeoff I am fine with.
For Samsung it’s a much bigger impact. They have a wider temperature operating range and advertise heavily to police, construction and similar outdoor roles. The phones work but chew batteries — replaceable batteries would move more units.
How many times have we had fires with Lenovo laptops, Canon/Nikon/Sony cameras, Dewalt/Ryobi/Makita power tools, and the million other devices that have replaceable Lithium batteries?
As long as users are using OEM batteries, there isn't any greater risk of battery fires, and as long as you price the OEM batteries reasonably, users will use them.
In fact I'd claim that it's safer to have a removeable battery, because if it starts bulging, you can eject it, and dispose of it safely, and replace it, instead of fussing around with first getting your precious files off the soldered SSD while it charges a dangerous bulging battery before you finally send the laptop in for $$$ service.
And add to that every other manufacturer that thinks they have to copy what Apple does (looking at you Samsung), and also removes ability to swap batteries and other things we used to be able to do every easily.
Most people never had more than one battery and there was a lot of wasted space to make that removable door and compartment. Making all of that water resistance, like newer phones are, would be a lot more difficult.
When phones (and laptops) got rid of swappable batteries you could still take off two screws, maybe remove a small amount of adhesive (putty or tape) and unhook the connector to swap it with a fresh one. It's about as user-swappable as RAM is on most workstations.
My phone is fine, but the battery is slowly becoming too weak for my needs. I don't want a new phone, just a new battery.
With the iPhone 4 it was literally removing 3 (sadly proprietary) screws and something like a guitar pick to safely pry it out. Those replacement batteries sell for $11. With newer iPhones, because of waterproofing there are more sealing adhesives and to make room for the stretch-tape you might have to pop off a few components.
When I'm seriously on-the-move, and the phone is critical to the mission, and I'm not able to be attached to a cord or carry a bulky external battery bank - a few thin, flat lithium batteries are an ideal solution. I'm talking about situations where high availability is key. Sometimes I bring 2 or 3 backup phones just in case, all the same model, and they all take the same batteries. It wasn't uncommon for me to have about 8 spare batteries on some trips. Half the batteries were always charging at a base station, and I would swap those out in a few seconds and get back out where I needed to be. Yeah it's not everyone's situation, but now I just need to have 4 or 5 devices instead, and have to use a stupid external charger which never does what I need it to. Operationally it's made me suffer having to use modern devices without removable batteries.
Charging from an external battery bank is just not ideal, it's inefficient, and bulky, and increases the heat of the device while charging which can actually be a problem in some situations.
Changing batteries takes less than a minute, creates no additional heat, and restores the device to 100% instantly.
I did this with every phone I had before they took the option away from flagship phones.
Yes, this is the main issue. But phone manufacturers didn't care that's how batteries are supposed to be used, most likely because it would have sold less phones.
It's weird how tempting it is. I had a roommate that used our clothes dryer daily. I have to admit I felt a little bit of ecosuperiority over him as I hung my clothes. Perhaps briefly pondering how much better the world would be if everyone gave up a luxury I personally could do without (while retaining all of my preferred luxuries for myself, of course).
It's even funny just to think of all the apparatuses involved in me leaving this snooty comment on the internet, a pleasure you'll have to pry from my corpse!
I agree that we're quick to look at other people's small wastes with condescension, but bitcoin is not a small waste.
If an evil overlord wanted to exacerbate our climate and energy problems, pushing Bitcoin to mainstream use is probably the ideal way to do it.
Here's my reasoning. Miners spend electricity. They're getting block rewards and fee rewards, they'll exchange earned bitcoins to dollars and pay their bills. So ultimately energy spent per block = (block reward + fee reward) x bitcoin price.
Right now block reward is 6.25 BTC. Last block fee reward was 2.13 BTC. Block reward will go down as time goes on.
I don't really understand economics of fee rewards and whether they'll grow over time linearly or exponentially. I checked historical data and it does not seem to grow at all. So I'll suppose that reward fee will not grow.
So in the end you'll have block reward of 10-20 BTC. That's all you have to pay your electricity bills after you mined block. So basically energy spent per block is directly correlated to bitcoin price, and that's about it.
Obviously bitcoin price won't grow to the moon and its price is limited by some economical factors.
So while bitcoin network might draw non-negligible amount of electricity, it still is limited by design.
Now if miners will decide to change bitcoin design, for example to increase block size, that's another matter. But it's not clear if that would happen.
Mining bitcoin is essentially printing money, so miners with profitable setups have an incentive to expand these setups. As mining capacity grows, a parameter called "difficulty" - which represents how much power you need to waste to mine a block - is adjusted so that the mining rate remains constant. Since mining is necessary to maintain network security, difficulty will grow to compensate for expanding mining capacity, but not high enough to kill it off.
If you look at the history of the adjustments to difficulty, you'll find a pretty much clean exponential.
(In other words, Bitcoin is as close as we've ever come to expressing greed in units of kilowatt hours.)
Since supply will become more and more constrained over time, while demand has no realizable upper limit (that we know of), this assumption is wrong:
> Obviously bitcoin price won't grow to the moon and its price is limited by some economical factors.
If bitcoin were to be fully adopted by the mainstream, BTCs would be easily in the M$ range.
So that's a rough estimate upper bound if Bitcoin would become our civilization currency of choice: 1.2% of total energy spent.
Not the end of the world, if you ask me.
Incorrect, growth curve is driven by mining power and forces innovation in lower cost of electricity. The worldwide cost of Bitcoin usage in KW has been compared to the headquarters of Bank of America's usage.
You seem to be missing a couple units there...
I see this take quite regularly and it seems a normal response to clickbaity headlines like "BTC has same power usage as Switzerland", but I think it misses some important nuance to the debate.
* Most studies locate miners and then assume their CO2 output based on energy use assuming a general energy mix of the country, this is not useful because energy usage != CO2 output, it depends very much what energy source is used
* Miners are strongly incentivized to find the cheapest possible electricity, often means finding pockets of excess wasted energy, which is also often renewable or hydro and using it rather than letting it go to waste
* BTC can be thought of as converting frequently excess wasted units of energy into a commodity which can be sold
* The above might change and if for some reason coal became the most competitively priced energy source then this would be very bad for the environment indeed.
Whether or not BTC is useful, it undeniably holds value, in the literal sense that if I gave you 1 now you could sell it at a market rate
All the above notwithstanding, a lot of research is going into finding an alternative to Proof-of-Work that is less energy intensive and I would hope that in the future a secure alternative will be found.
Love the bitcoin submarine. lol.
To add something informative to the conversation ...
The reason that the big bitcoin farmers are located in China is that the power generation model is different in China than the West.
China is controlled by about 8 Dragon Families in concert with the CCP (you'll notice that in news stories the prominent actors all descended from Maoist leaders, etc.)
So if you're a bitcoin miner, you just talk to the Dragon Family in charge of power generation (for example, one family owns the Three Gorges Dam profit stream, plus most other dams), and hook up to a hydroelectric dam. No published electricity rates for you.
The above also explains why the arrest of the Huawei CFO in Canada is such a big deal in China - she is royalty, and the West is treating her like a common peasant.
She only thinks she's somebody.
No one knows who the fuck she is outside of China.
Sweating just not good enough for me, even when it's dry. I can cope with it, it's not like being hot would kill me (within reason and if I stay hydrated), but it has a serious impact on my performance. When it's hot my brain gets foggy and my thoughts slow. Maybe I could still operate at a caveman level of performance in that sort of weather, but I couldn't do my job.
See also: https://www.vox.com/2015/3/23/8278085/singapore-lee-kuan-yew...
Your assumption falls flat because a lot of people don't need to generate extra heat from electricity, they already have too much of it.
Secondly, municipal heat is pretty rare in the US; few cities have it and the number keeps getting smaller each year. What few municipal heat systems that do exist are largely for business districts too, unless if you live in NYC as an American you most likely will be using either AC or forced air natural gas heat. Given the choice between the two, AC would be the best possible one from an efficiency perspective.
0: Heat pumps can be used to heat too, which is even better. Its my hope that heat pumps will become more common in the coming decades to assist in electrification.
I'm assuming by "municipal heat" you mean district heating. Can you explain why those systems keep getting rarer in the US? Over here in Europe, we are investing a significant amount of money in expanding those systems and connecting more houses.
And district heating basically doesn’t exist in the US outside of NYC.
A quick search indicates there are 3.5 billion smart phones in the world, assuming these are all wirelessly charged and wasting 1kWh per year that gets you 3.5TWh which is more than the annual consumption of many countries
I had a similar discussion with a friend recently about all the cars driving around with lights on in the middle of the day - even if they might be using LEDs, when you multiply by the number of cars on the roads that is still a lot of petrol being wasted for no reason at all
If you think running some LEDs are expensive, you don't want to know what a serious accident costs society. The type that totals two cars and puts multiple people in hospital.
I have a car that pre-dates DRLs, and I always drive it with the lights on. The "horrendously" inefficient incandescent bulbs might cost me an extra dollar or two in fuel, but could save my life. I'd rather have my life.
For anyone else thinking like I was, this is the evidence from the UK government site :
Research has shown that DRLs are likely to reduce multiple vehicle daytime accidents and fatalities by up to 6% once all vehicles are equipped. DRL are likely to result in a small increase in fuel consumption and CO² emissions of around 0.5% but this is expected to be lower when LEDs are used in place of filament light sources.
Doesn't apply to wireless phone charging though, so I'm standing by that comment until someone disabuses me of that too..
Yes, countries like Liechtenstein, Papua New Guinea and Swaziland. Even a generous upper bound estimate like 3.5TWh is vanishingly small in the face of our ~21PWh annual global energy consumption. 
The point is: by focusing on wireless charging, we'd be investing effort in ineffective endeavors while there's far more low hanging fruit we could pick. And people's willingness to put in effort for the environment is a finite resource as well. So we should be smart about spending it.
For example: instead of worrying about daytime lights, how about cycling instead of driving, even just once in a while, whenever the weather is nice and you're feeling like it? That's sure to have a greater impact on the environment.
We did some quick mental math and figured that charging his phone from empty to full would take about as much energy as driving the car a few inches. He plugged the phone in.
It's not just Apple that is turning something that would be durable into a consumable for profit. At work for decades Dell notebook power-supplies would fail in the exact same manner, cable fraying at the hard edge with the connector plug. It was such a predictable issue Dell at one point even offered a power supply renewal option together with their battery replacement subscription.
Maybe the difference isn’t so low as you estimate it? Maybe the wired chargers use much less power when the phone is not being charged, compared to the wireless chargers? Then the difference could be approximately 0 (as your phone is charged only a few hours per day) to approximately N kWh (due to a constant power draw — nobody will buy a wireless charger to keep it unplugged).
Otherwise, I agree that not upgrading the phone saves even more.
And honestly I’m tired to be asked to change lot of little things in my life when all of them cumulated won’t even account for the pollution generated by a random factory in a day.
If they really cared about the environment, they'd avoid updating their product every year and encourage users to keep using the same device for longer, but of course they would never do that.
I mean, look at iOS 14 -- it supports phones that are five years old. There is no prompting to upgrade to a new device. There is advertising on billboards and on TV, but not on the phone itself.
What Apple needs however is to make swapping Battery cheaper, and invest in battery technology that makes them last longer in cycles. Right now the battery replacement is $ 69 for iPhone 12. While the iPhone 8 and below are much more reasonable $49.
Ok with charging at 5w? Plug your lightning-to-A cable into the little tiny cube charger they've been selling since forever.
Already have a faster USB charger? It works.
Ok with Qi at 7W? Works
Oh, you want the new shiny MagSafe puck system?
Great. Buy it.
This analysis completely ignores that the new shiny system is supposed to be a better experience. It's completely additive to what we have now, nothing has been taken away: except the included charger and earphones, neither of which I would want to have.
I expect MagSafe will be quite popular. But that's because it's cool, not because anything about the new generation of phones compels users to buy it.
On the one hand, yeah, USB-C works great, and everything else I own takes it. On the other hand, Lightning also works great, USB-C isn't an improvement on the merits, and iPhone users have a bunch of accessories for it. Like in my car, I have a 12v charger with one USB-A port and a built-in Lightning cable, and I'd have to either junk it or just ignore the built in cable if they went USB-C.
I'm pretty sure the writing is on the wall with MagSafe: Apple intends to ditch the port entirely. That makes me nervous, frankly, and there are people out there who use an SD card reader who would be furious.
But I think that future is more likely than one in which Apple ditches the Lightning port for USB-C. We'll see.
You must use iTunes to back up, via cable, right?
To be honest, I don't know if my significant other's phone (iPhone 11 Pro) can even connect to my car anymore through the cable. (Bluetooth being the only other option - which has significantly worse audio quality and issues like static or something of the sort)
Upgrading OS is the main source of frustration and time wasted in my pro-audio world. So I salute you - iOS10 survivor!
Note - listening to audio in cars, it's a compromise. It's never ideal, so I wouldn't sweat the quality - but you're right to question the reliability.
Use the good old, eco-friendly, headphone jack!
(All consumer wireless is ONLY instigated by Apple because it is cheaper for Apple, but consequently a poorer, less eco, experience for the world)
I’d rather they stick with lightning.
If you do, but want to switch to wireless carplay, there are adapters: https://cplay2air.com/products/cplaystreamer-wireless-adapte...
That said, I think Apple will offer both lightning and portless iPhones during the transition. They might make the "mini" phones be portless for example.
But for some reason Apple has never brought this support to the iPhone's lightning port.
The most generous outcome I can see is Apple ditching ports on the iPhone and Mini, and moving the Pros to USB-C.
I think the biggest risk in USB-C, for me, it makes me really nervous when I buy a cable, and even then I'm not 100% confident. When I buy a lightning cable, I have no fears. And they're not even more expensive anymore. Some of those USB-C cables are just as expensive.
I.e. it's always a lose situation to have the non-standard cable. Either a generic USB cable would be better or the Apple brand cable would be better for more than just your Apple device.
That being said USB C cables for phone charging aren't where people usually run into the USB C standard confusion anyways.
But yeah, I really wanted USB-C. Bought the phone anyway though.
Maybe in a few years wireless charging will be efficient enough that you don't have to bring a larger power bank to compensate for power loss.
I can't... I don't... why would they do such an insane thing.
Exposing electrical contacts to the environment like on the Lightning connector is bad for several reasons, including increased risk of static electricity damage and wear on the exposed electrical contacts. Apple has gone to great lengths to reduce or eliminate the static electricity risk by integrating a special IC into the cable. The contact wear issue has not been addressed by them. Many of the cables I have show signs of eroded contacts and I think that is the main reason why some cables of mine have failed.
The USB-C connector surrounds the contacts with a mechanical shield that protects them from fingers or anything else. This is a standard connector design that has been used on pretty much every connector. It is boring, but it works.
The Lightning is great engineering, but is ultimately let down by the radical design IMHO.
BTW, I am also an electrical engineer that has designed MFI accessories and uses iPhones.
A lightning to HDMI adapter really has a decoder as the phone streams compressed video to it. Which lowers the quality and raises the price.
Also USB-C can charge my computer. Lightning cannot.
The entire reason I want something like USB-C is so that I can do everything with one cable. Lightning is not up to the task.
How many of those has USB-C Devices?
Most of the complain where from Mac users, Ahah, why cant I charge my iPhone with USB-C just like MacBook Pro?
There are 100M Active Mac Users, and I willing to bet there are at least 20M on Mac which dont have an USB-C port.
What you are asking is to change the port to something that barely gives any benefits for the convenience of a small group of users. ( an iPhone with USB-C Port does not automatically mean it will support faster transfer, or higher Wattage charging, both can be done with Lightning Port, should Apple feels the need. )
I just dont understand it.
I'm always confused how people talk themselves into believing this. It is obviously not the case.
Sure, there will be some minor pain during the transition, but the world did not end when Apple transitioned from the 30-pin to Lighting transition, nor did it end when phone manufacturers transitioned from micro-USB to USB-C. You can use USB-C to lightning adapter, like how they have 30-pin to lightning adapter earlier.
Nobody will throwaway their lightning accessories. iPhones and its accessories have a strong used market, and it will find good homes to older iPhone users.
It doesn't ignore it, it's explicitly about it.
What the article is saying is that Apple is sending out conflicting marketing messages. On the one hand, they advertise the lack of charger in an iPhone box by their environmental consciousness. On the other hand, they advertise the "full experience", in order to get which you need to buy a new charger and a new cable. The author isn't asking Apple to change their packaging strategy; the author wants Apple to make the marketing consistent.
(Personally, I think the two messages only lend credence to the cynical view: that Apple's environmental concern is bullshit, and it's all a way to hide a price increase behind "optional" dongles, hoping the buyers are too dumb or too committed to the brand to notice.)
So what? Why do we focus so much on Apple?
Apple has (like many successful companies) into a bad habit of being evil by default. Identifying where the market has born a bad actor is par for HN.
It isn't widespread knowledge that Apple is actively engaging in practices they market against. It's also interesting to note that they seem to get worse each release and people still haven't been acknowledging the reality.
The knowledge that Exxon is promoting anti-global warming hand waving is ubiquitous.
The perspective presented is to the point that it's marketing is laughably contradictory. It's good fun for both those who visit Apple stores (and didn't realize what happened) and those who don't for various reasons...like avoiding planned obsolescence.
If I bought an iPhone 12 tomorrow, I would, at minimum, also have to buy another cable, because the one Apple included doesn't work with my existing charger. Not the end of the world, but still annoying.
But, that just means I have to buy 2 new wall warts (need the high power one, IIRC), still need 1 new cable (unless it's included with he wireless pad), and 2 wireless pads.
And it's not an option in the car, because CarPlay requires a cable (in 90% of cars, AFAIK only BMW has implemented wireless CarPlay).
Personally I have an anker dock and I stopped buying any apple accessories.
Having used a Qi charger for my existing phones and a MagSafe charger for my Apple Watch, I can say that I prefer the non-MagSafe Qi charger for my phone. It's the one that most gives the illusion of truly wireless charging.
With MagSafe charging now I imagine I'll have to lift my phone and presumably detach the MagSafe puck at the same time, making it more cumbersome than what I do now, which is just lifting the phone off the Qi charger. I verified this hypothesis here: https://youtu.be/XDKPNwC-5D4?t=185
While there will likely be sticky/weighted versions of the MagSafe charging puck to alleviate this issue at some point, this is not a better experience as designed.
I'll likely continue to use a generic Qi charger for my phone
Looking at Apple's track record, this is a ridiculous statement.
There is no future proofing planned obsolescence.
But since they changed the charging options, it really feels like a cost cutting measure they are trying really hard to spin as an eco-friendly one.
So will every iPad charger ever made, btw.
And every USB-C Mac charger ever made.
Honestly, it doesn't matter whether you or any particular observer wants to give credit for this reducing e-waste or being "eco-friendly". It's a plainly obvious fact that it will massively reduce e-waste and be a massive net positive on the eco-friendly front, in about 5 different ways. Those facts remain valid regardless of how one chooses to think about the ethical/moral/environmental cred or goodwill that Apple deserves for this move, or Apple's profit motives.
Before, you were forced to buy the bundled wall wart, now you have the option to keep using what you had or buy a charger if you need it?
They're still forcing a bundled cable, but it's a different cable you probably don't have many of?
There is the iphone SE 2, Pixel 4a etc...
If it's such a problem, buy a braided cable from Amazon and power brick. Cheaper cost, better quality and will last longer than any Apple charger.
In any given room I can find at least 5 I think.
For 0.025% of the price of the phone or less, you can get a braided lightning cable and stop caring about this first world problem.
Isn't wireless charging a big step backwards with respect to power efficiency? With the millions of phones they sell and the fact that every one of them is charged daily, are the losses due to Apples new charging scheme insignificant?
The iPhone 12 has a 11 Wh battery. Assume it's fully charged daily, that's 11Wh * 365 ~ 4kwh per year. It's about 50 cents of electricity to charge the phone for a year. It's imperceptible given other household electricity items.
If people are concerned about electricity usage, they should give away LED lightbulbs.
In some places where heating is still done with natural gas you might even be more eco-friendly by having an inefficient charger.
And as far as heating is concerned, heat pumps are more efficient, and most electricity—when turned into resistive heat—is less efficient than burning the fuel directly.
So the only case where it would be a benefit is if your heat is fuel-based, but your power is renewable, and this condition lasts most of the year.
ETA: the total charging loss from ten million iPhones charging 0-100 percent via MagSafe every day for a year would be 21,505 teslas.
The last bit is also wrong, 6wh * 10M = 600 Teslas. You can also read as “600 Teslas can provide phone charging for ten million people for an entire year”, take it as you wish...
Your fridge can easily use 100kWh a month. You’ll save far more energy by closing the door a couple seconds early every time you open it. Phone charging is a drop in the bucket.
But it's not the optimal experience.
I do admit that it's not optimal for every single user, but I do think it's a net improvement for most users.
This seems to be a common narrative, that the savings have been passed onto the consumer. Is it really true? It's difficult to be sure, as there's no iPhone 12 that comes with the plug + earbuds bundled. However, there is one data point that most people don't bother to consider.
The iPhone SE (2020) base model launched at $399 in April. It still retails for $399 today.
In April, the iPhone SE shipped with headphones and a plug. It doesn't anymore today.
In the case of the iPhone SE, the price absolutely did not go down. All that happened was that Apple increased their profit margins.
 As part of our efforts to reach our environmental goals, iPhone SE does not include a power adapter or EarPods. Included in the box is a USB‑C to Lightning cable that supports fast charging and is compatible with USB‑C power adapters and computer ports. https://web.archive.org/web/20201023201007/https://www.apple...
The only thing consumers need to think about is "Does this product provide enough value to me for its cost". For me personally a charging brick and earpods provides no value since I would just leave them in the box.
I'm not sure whether this is satire or an sincere attempt at arguing that price hikes are good for consumers.
If the savings really did just go to C level pockets then the product next year would be less compelling than the competitions so you would logically pick the other offerings.
Edit: Oh, they also removed the earpods. Yeah, for the 2020 SE this is a clear move to increase margins. To be fair, it was already lower margin and is still a great value phone.
You are a one off use case. The standard deviation for your experience is pretty large. Especially for first time iPhone buyers.
- People who are upgrading an old iphone will still have a USB-A to lightning cable from their old phone, so they can charge their new iphone using their old charger and old cable
- People upgrading from android probably already have a USB-C charger, so they can use the bundled USB-C to lighting cable to charge their new iphone
- People who want to buy a new USB-C charger can do so without also needing to buy a lightning cable to go with it. (The charger can also be used for charging an ipad or magsafe puck, so it makes sense not to include a cable with the charger.)
In short, by including the USB-C to lightning cable, almost everyone who buys an iphone 12 won't need any new accessories with their new phone. (Unless you want faster charging or wireless charging and don't have other USB-C bricks floating around.)
I have both android tablets and an iPad from 2014 and the ipad still feels like a modern device with the latest OS version while the android tablets are stuck on a 2015 build of android and feel very slow.
I bought an iphone 12 this year because my iphone 6s+ is 5 years old at this point, and I wanted to spoil myself. My new phone feels basically identical to my old phone, and despite 5 years of innovation I think it was a waste of money. Most of the improvements in iphones in the last 5 years has been in software, and the 6s (for now) still gets all the updates anyway.
There's some differences - low light photography is much better. My new phone is also physically smaller with the same screen size and much snappier. But its also missing a headphone jack, force touch and it can't be unlocked with a face mask.
I think next time I'll keep my phone until it dies - which I'm hoping will be ~6-7 years. Given that sort of longevity, the price seems pretty reasonable.
Yes, the SoC gets improved each year, but so does their ability to manufacture, i.e. the manufacturing costs should go down, and they keep spending the same amount on R&D to innovate. Economies of scale also play its part.
> it really feels like a cost cutting measure they are trying really hard to spin as an eco-friendly one
This is cynical.
> This is cynical.
The iPhone SE launched with earbuds and a plug. It no longer ships with them. The retail price hasn't changed. It can be good for the environment and a cost-cutting measure.
Another commenter has noted that by making the box about half as thick, that doubles the number of units that can fit in a container. That's a huge saving for Apple. And yet the iPhone SE still retails at the same price despite now including less.
This is the new normal. Sealed hardware to discourage battery replacement, no 3.5mm jack to discourage reuse of old headphones and to encourage sales of Airpods with their tiny 2 year batteries, and now, no power bricks to encourage sales of extra power bricks. All greenwashed and the idiot consumer buys it.
Why is any of this your business?
Either the price works for you or it doesn't. There's no moral component to this. You aren't entitled to low costs.
Because I am the person paying for the thing?
Generally speaking, people care about saving more of their money, they care much less about how much money the company they are purchasing goods or services for is able to retain by providing less for the same (or more) price.
I don't see how people paying 1 grand from Apple are upset at not having $0.50 power brick. If it's a problem, you can get a USB A/USB C Amazon Basics dual bricks + braided lightning cable that will last forever and is objectively better quality.
Granted, if you're enough of a sucker to buy these accessories directly, it's not Apple's fault; it's yours.
It’s like selling a car without tires, saying it’s a big savings for the company while not changing the price.
It's more like selling a kettle without water. It's expected most reasonable people will have their own water supply.
First time buyers of iPhones aren't unreasonable. Being unreasonable is saying a trillion dollar company is fine to charge more for less.
If you lived in a small town with only a single bakery in it, would it not matter to you whether the bakery is selling you bread for a bit over their production costs, or 2x, or 5x those costs?
The word that's used to refer to mass market goods sold with large profit margins is "overpriced".
Make a purchasing decision?
There are value-conscious customers out there, many of which hang out on "deal hunting" sites even for luxury goods. Although the type of consumer willing to scrutinize the bill of materials in order to optimize the best specs per dollar is probably looking at Android.
Lots of wall socket USB charging ports are USB-A - even nice new ones with qualcomm quick charge (or whatever it is).
Personally, I would much prefer utility ports (on the wall, in the rack, on the backs of computers) to remain USB-A and leave the mini connectors on the devices themselves...
My iMac 5K has TB3 ports but whenever I plug anything there the temps increase 10ºC which is a deal breaker IMO. I'm more than happy with the speeds of USB3 ports.
The only device I connect via USB-C regularly is my Android phone.
Doubtful. I'm pretty sure every single motherboard has at least one USB-C port in the back, and most will come with the new USB-C header as a lot of the latest cases have a front USB-C port.
They didn't. They added a new, optional one. Everything that used to charge an iPhone 11 will still charge an iPhone 12. I'm even willing to bet money on the fact that the original 30-pin connector (via an adapter) will charge the new phones. An iPod dock from 2001 would probably charge these phones.
The article is a bit of a strawman but I think it's inexcusable to be charging nearly twice the price of the charger for a 2m cable that disintegrates after a year or two. Especially when - as you say - they've changed the one in the box backwards-incompatibly (and it's 1m too).