The ITAD Report

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Reading tip: Refurbishing and the circular society


Do you want to know more about how refurbishing of consumer electronics fits in with a circular vision? In that case, why not take a look at this nice paper from the Ellen MacArthur Foundation? It’s not a long or heavy read, and it’s full of valuable knowledge. It provides insights into what a circular economy approach could look like for the consumer electronics industry, with a focus on smartphones, laptops, tablets, and smart home devices. The foundation describes it as a first attempt at a vision for how electronics could fit within a circular economy, and actions by the industry to accelerate the transition.

Circular consumer electronics: An initial exploration (PDF)

ITAD market continues to grow


Two new reports project a strong continued growth for the global ITAD market. Their predictions end up pretty close to each other.

According to Acumen Research and Consulting estimates an average annual growth of 6,9%, landing at a total market size of Euro 19,7 billion by 2026. Two factors behind this growth are, says Acumen Research, ecological impact and rise in consumer awareness. Also, the ongoing cloud migration gives an extra boost to the ITAD market.

The other report, from Verified Market Research, projects an even stronger annual growth: 9,7%. If this projection turns out to be correct, it means a doubling of the global ITAD market from 2017 (Euro 10.77 billion) to 2025 (Euro 22.61 billion)

Is this the most creative way to reuse electronics?


You don’t have to be very creative to come up with a few arguments for giving consumer electronics a second life. In other words, the “why” is pretty easy. But when it comes to “how” - creativity is a good thing. Just ask Zayd Menk from Zimbabwe’s capital Harare.

The 18 year old Menk has found a pretty unusual hobby, using e-waste to create beautiful small-scale models of well known cities out of old computer parts.

“I think in a perfect world - there wouldn’t be such a thing as waste. Everything would be reused and re-purposed for something else”, says Menk.

On of Zayd’s projects is a model of Manhattan. It took him three months, and he had to scavenge computer parts from friends and family and even the roadside. Another of his larger projects is a model of the Westminster area in central London.

These models are built out of bits of PC that were going to waste. The London model includes Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament and Westminster Bridge and much more.

In his home town Harare, electronic waste is the source of pollution, Menk’s artistic work is driven by his vision about a world where nothing goes to waste.

U.S. consumers cold to second hand electronics


Recently we told you about the world’s fastest growing market for cell phones, remember? It’s not India, not China, not USA. It’s actually the refurbished market. According to analyst firm Counterpoint, the global market for refurbished smartphones grew by 13% during 2017, reaching almost 140 million units. That’s a pretty good thing, right?

But, still, just a small part of all mobile phones are being reused. Most of them are just scrapped. At least in the USA. According to a brand new report from EcoATM Gazelle, less than 1 in 10 Americans buy used electronics. The question posed in the report is: Why do Americans buy used products such as cars, clothing and furniture, while at the same time showing such low interest in second hand mobile phones and laptops?

Yanyan Ji at EcoATM Gazelle says the survey results indicates “a general lack of awareness around e-waste and the negative impact that consumer electronic purchasing and recycling decisions are having on our environment”.

Data erasure and diagnostics company Blancco has conducted similar research on the second hand mobile phone market. Llack of trust is the critical factor, concludes Blancco. Their data reveals that 2 out of 3 respondents globally have concerns that the data on their old devices might be compromised. According to Blancco, data management and improved device erasure practices will give the the secondary mobile device market a strong injection.

“Device collections will accelerate only if operators, OEMs and 3PLs remain fiercely committed to data management and device erasure best-practices”, says Russ Ernst at Blancco.

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