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Jacob Smith: Where have all the Apples gone?

Jacob Smith • Sep 28, 2017 at 1:00 PM

This week, I made the horrible mistake of upgrading my iPhone to the latest iOS.

I say horrible mistake, because immediately after upgrading, my phone refused to charge on any charger except for the one given to me at the Verizon store on the day I bought my phone.

It got me thinking about how quickly we move through technology these days. Admittedly, I’m far from an Apple fan boy; it took a lot of convincing for me to switch from Android, and I’m thinking about switching back.

It’s not a stretch, however, to say that Apple rules the phone world these days, and that’s honestly kind of crazy. I mean it was just 10 years ago Nokia was the undisputed king of cellphones; the iPhone was released that same year.

Of course, we all know what happened next. Smartphones took over, and Nokia couldn’t keep up with the new challenger; of course the company has recently made a small comeback, so don’t count them out just yet.

My point, though, is that the iPhone hasn’t been around for that long and yet, look how far it’s come in the short time.

If you were to pick up a first-, second-, third- or even fourth-generation iPhone today and try to use it as a cellphone, it wouldn’t be able to handle the operating systems.

In just 10 years, four generations of phones are completely obsolete.

I’ve even read reports that the fifth and sixth generations struggle with the new systems.

I’m not saying Apple is way worse than any of the other companies in this respect. The Samsung Galaxy and Motorola Droid have the same issues.

My point is, what happens to all of these old phones?

I know that most cellphone companies have a system for recycling their old phones, and I’m sure that this cuts down on a lot of waste, but I’m also sure there are thousands of people out there who don’t bother turning in their old phones.

I know that at my house, we have a drawer full of old smartphones that don’t work anymore for various reasons.

This thought led me to another thought. What about all the old iPods?

According to lifewire.com, 390 million iPods were bought between 2001-2014, and almost all of them are obsolete.

How many iPods are just sitting around houses collecting dust, because they don’t even work anymore? How many just got thrown away? Where do 390 million iPods even go?

There’s probably a good answer for all of these questions. In all honesty, it’s just something that struck me as I tried and failed to charge my iPhone just Tuesday morning.

Who knows? Maybe I’ll end up buying the latest iPhone just so I don’t have to deal with the problems with the old one.

Maybe I’ll just get a Nokia. Never had any problems with those. 

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