Apple develops its own robots to recycle iPhones


Robots have been developed by Apple to recycle its iPhone.

The robots, known as Liam, have been designed to disassemble 1.2 million phones a year, sorting out high-quality components such as aluminium, copper and gold.


Liam prototypes are operating in California and the Netherlands with the aim of extracting more material than can be done by shredding.

Overall, Apple recovered 27,839 tonnes of material for reuse through its in-store take back initiatives in 2015, according to its latest sustainability report.

Apple vice president of environment, policy and social initiatives Lisa Jackson said: “We’re as committed as ever to conserving precious resources. In 2015, we diverted more than 89 million pounds of e-waste from landfills.

“And more recently, we introduced Liam, a line of robots that can disassemble an iPhone every 11 seconds and sort its high-quality components so they can be recycled, reducing the need to mine those resources from the earth.

“It’s an experiment in recycling technology, and we hope this kind of thinking will inspire others.”

View the full report here