Apple have addressed the need to get rid of old products once they have been replaced by allowing customers to recycle their goods with them. The idea is that if a customer replaces their old iBook with a new MacBook they can send their iBook to Apple who will assess whether the product can be reused or whether it has to be recycled. If he product can be reused, the customer will recieve a cheque for the value of the product and Apple with restore the item and sell it as a second hand product. If the product has unworthy of restoration or no value then they will recycle it in an environmentally friendly fashion for you.

Apple is at the fore-front of environmentally friendly computing having reduced their usage of materials by making products smaller and more compact, by removing all toxic substances from their products so that they can be recycled efficiently, and by making their manufacturing more responsible. They have based their figures on the same basic criteria that Dell puroduce their figures in, so that comparisons can be made where necassary.

According to Dell the average life of computing equipment is seven years. This means so long as the weight of products recycled in a year is the same or more than the weight of products sold seven years ago, the company is making a positivie step towards a better carbon footprint and a stronger green status.

Apple have now managed to get their recycling numbers up to 70% of what they sold seven years ago, and plan to continue at this rate until 2015. This is a great statistic seeing as how they boast a longer battery life than PCs as one of their big selling points, so their products should last longer than seven years.  

One big problem with getting rid of old computers is not knowing how to safely erase all the data so that no identity or credit/debit card fraud can take place from the information on the hard drive. Apple have covered this base as well in their FAQ section to do with the recycling scheme. These questions and answers were:

What should I do with my old equipment before I send it in?

PowerON recommends that you perform a complete backup and data wipe (erasure) of all the information on your old computer. Apple and PowerON assume no responsibility for loss or confidentiality of personal data on equipment. While in transit to PowerON, any files or data left on your system may be accessible to others if data is not erased.

What happens to my personal data?

PowerON’s data erasure process includes complete data removal. PowerON recommends that you perform a complete backup and data wipe (erasure) of all the information on your old computer. Apple and PowerON have no responsibility for loss or confidentiality of customer data on reused or recycled equipment.

This is a great way to get rid of your old computer, iPod or iPhone. Not only is it much easier than finding a place that recycles computers, taking it there, possibly paying a fee and never really being sure of whether the information was erased properly but there is a high chance you will get some money back too.

It's not entirely known at the moment whether the system will be like in America where you recieve Apple money, to spend on future Apple purchases, or whether you can recieve money for the products, but either way it's good to get something back for it, and as the saying goes 'Once you go mac you never go back', so there'll always be something to spend your Apple money on if that is the only option!