Meet Daisy: the Apple robot that takes apart your dead iPhone

Matthew Field
Apple's iPhone killer - Daisy - © 2018 Apple Inc.

The world has a problem with waste and mobile phones are no different, with tonnes of glass, plastic and rare metals going into our smartphones and ending up dumped on landfill sites.

Which is why Apple has launched a new robot, affectionately known as Daisy, as its latest iPhone-recycling bot to take apart dead phones. 

A giant mechanical arm, Daisy is capable of dismantling 200 iPhones an hour to recover valuable materials and metals that are stored in each iPhone, and Apple says she is more efficient than other automated recycling robots.

Daisy replaces an older iPhone recovery robot, known as Liam, and is in fact made up of some of his re-used remains.

Apple tried to improve its environmental credentials in recent years. More than 1.5bn smartphones have been sold worldwide and many end up as e-waste. The average Briton throws away around 20kg of electronic waste each year

Daisy pulls apart an iPhone in her vice-like grip Credit: Apple

Apple said it aims to eventually only use recycled materials in its products. In a year, Daisy would be able to recycle materials from roughly 1.8 million iPhones if operated constantly, some way from the 200 million plus iPhones it sells each year. 

The arrival of Daisy comes after Apple announced its sites were 100pc powered by clean energy, including its retail stores, data centres and offices. The company has also signed up its 85 suppliers to a Clean Energy Portal programme to identify renewable energy sources.

Apple's 50-megawatt solar farm in Arizona Credit: Reuters

Apple called upon to rid its supply chain of human rights abuses. Several tech companies have been found to use precious metals from mines that contribute to child labour. Amnesty International has held the company up as doing the most to clean up its supply chain, but added "the bar is low" among tech companies.