GadgetsThe market for digital devices is growing. By 2020, an estimated 5.5 billion people will own a smartphone, while over 50 billion devices will be connected to the internet. And with the yearly launch of flagship phones from Apple and Samsung, consumers are always eager to get their hands on a brand new device.

When the mobile industry boom happened during the 1990s, the main focus was simply to create a gadget that could make calls and send an SMS. However, the increased demand for smartphones in the past two decades have led some manufacturers to turn to unethical manufacturing practices and display a lack of consideration for environmental impact of their production. Environmental issues over electronics are slowly coming to light, leading more people to practice the rules of “green manufacturing.”

Owning a gadget nowadays is inevitable. Consumers would do best in educating themselves on how to make eco-friendly decisions when it comes to their beloved electronics.

On Buying a New Gadget

Sustainable electronic decision-making goes beyond considering gadget specifications and physical attractiveness when planning a purchase. Choose a brand the implements greener production efforts, such as Apple and HP who been lauded for their “avoidance of hazardous substances in products” and “product life-cycle management” campaigns. When it comes to smartphones, Sony and Samsung hold a green appeal for their commitment to product energy efficiency.

On Buying Smartphone Cases and Accessories

Users are constantly swapping out their smartphones for upgraded models. The situation is problematic as it makes sticking to one case impossible. Choose cases that use recyclable and low-impact materials that leave the smallest footprint possible. These include biodegradable plastic, eco-friendly wood, handmade cases and using real pressed flowers in a case’s design.

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On Used Electronics

The electronics industry’s goal is to launch yearly iterations of their products, so that spec-hungry smartphone users trade in their old, but still functional mobile phones for the newest model. However, most old gadgets are simply thrown away and aren’t recycled properly. With 80% of all electronic waste toxic to the environment, the situation cannot continue.

Consumers may dispose of their old phone ethically by finding an electronics recycler in their area. Other manufacturers may take old phones back to make use of the old phone’s parts and resources. Cell phone donations may also benefit charity groups, where soldiers and women may make use of old phones.

The demand for technological devices is increasing every year. Some companies employ green manufacturing techniques to reduce the impact of their manufacturing on the environment. There may be no perfect sustainable option in electronics, but small, lifestyle choices can make a difference. In a tech-savvy world, people should embrace ethical habits to make sure their gadget consumption isn’t becoming too much of a threat on the environment.