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Meet Daisy: Apple’s iPhone Recycling Robot

  • By kuwaitigenius
  • June 6, 2024

When you think about Apple, you probably think about iPhones, iPads, and MacBooks. But did you know that Apple is also a leader in recycling technology? Meet Daisy, Apple’s iPhone recycling robot. Daisy is an amazing piece of technology designed to help recycle old iPhones, making sure that the valuable materials inside them can be reused. Let’s dive into the world of Daisy and see how she’s helping Apple make the world a greener place.


What is Daisy?

Daisy is a recycling robot created by Apple to disassemble old iPhones and recover valuable materials. Introduced in 2018, Daisy is an upgraded version of an earlier robot named Liam. While Liam could only disassemble a limited number of iPhone models, Daisy can handle up to 23 different models, including the iPhone 5 and the iPhone 12.

Step-by-Step Guide: How Daisy Works

Daisy, Apple’s innovative iPhone recycling robot, is a marvel of engineering designed to disassemble old iPhones and recover valuable materials efficiently. Here’s a detailed step-by-step guide on how Daisy works:

Step 1: Scanning the iPhone

When an iPhone is placed into Daisy, the first step involves scanning the device. This is crucial because Daisy needs to identify the exact model of the iPhone to understand how to disassemble it correctly.

  • Model Identification: Daisy scans the iPhone to determine its make and model. This ensures that the robot knows the specific internal layout of the device, which is essential for precise disassembly.

Step 2: Removing the Display

Once the iPhone model is identified, Daisy begins the disassembly process. The first component to be removed is the display.

  • Display Separation: Using precision tools, Daisy carefully detaches the iPhone’s display without damaging other parts. This step is crucial as the display is one of the most delicate components.
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Step 3: Extracting the Battery

The next step is to remove the battery from the iPhone. This process is a bit more complex due to the adhesive used to hold the battery in place.

  • Adhesive Loosening: Daisy uses a burst of extremely cold air to freeze the adhesive, making it brittle and easier to break. This method allows the battery to be removed without causing damage to it or other components.

Step 4: Unscrewing Components

After the display and battery are removed, Daisy proceeds to unscrew various components inside the iPhone.

  • Screw Removal: Daisy’s precise robotic arms unscrew all the necessary screws holding the internal components. This is done methodically to ensure that each part can be extracted intact.

Step 5: Separating the Modules

Daisy has four main modules that handle different parts of the disassembly process. Each module is designed to focus on specific components.

  1. Module 1: Responsible for removing the display.
  2. Module 2: Handles the battery removal.
  3. Module 3: Focuses on unscrewing and extracting internal components.
  4. Module 4: Places all the disassembled parts onto a conveyor belt for sorting (6).

Step 6: Sorting the Components

Once all the components are disassembled, they are placed on a conveyor belt.

  • Conveyor Belt: The conveyor belt moves the separated components to human workers who sort them into different bins. This sorting is essential for proper recycling and ensures that each material type is processed correctly.

Step 7: Management and Recycling Materials

The sorted components include various valuable materials such as gold, copper, platinum, lithium, aluminum, and steel. These materials are then sent to recycling facilities.

  • Material Recovery: The recovered materials are processed and refined to be reused in the production of new devices. This step helps reduce the need for mining new raw materials and supports Apple’s sustainability goals.
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Additional Information

  • Capacity: Daisy can disassemble up to 200 iPhones per hour, equating to about 1.2 million iPhones per year.
  • Location: Currently, Daisy operates in Texas, with plans for another unit in the Netherlands.
  • Environmental Impact: Daisy helps Apple reduce its carbon footprint and supports the company’s commitment to using more recycled materials in its products.

Why is Daisy Important?

Management and Recycling old electronics is crucial for several reasons. First, it helps reduce e-waste, which is a growing problem worldwide. Second, it allows valuable materials to be recovered and reused. This not only saves resources but also reduces the need for mining new materials, which can be harmful to the environment.

Daisy’s work is part of Apple’s broader environmental initiatives. For example, in 2018, Apple announced that it had reduced its carbon footprint from 29.5 million metric tons in 2016 to 27.5 million metric tons in 2017. The company also uses 100% recycled tin in the main logic boards of 11 different products and has tripled its use of recycled aluminum over the past year.

Apple’s Environmental Commitment

Apple is committed to using more recycled materials in its products. For instance, the Taptic Engine in the iPhone 11 is made entirely from recycled rare earth elements, and the company aims to eventually use only recycled or renewable materials in all of its products.

Lisa Jackson, Apple’s Vice President of Environment, Policy, and Social Initiatives, said, “At Apple, we’re constantly working toward smart solutions to address climate change and conserve our planet’s precious resources. We’re also thrilled to introduce Daisy to the world, as she represents what’s possible when innovation and conservation meet.”

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How Can You Help?

If you have an old iPhone that you’re no longer using, you can help by recycling it through Apple’s GiveBack program. You can bring your old iPhone to an Apple Store or mail it in, and Apple will ensure it is recycled responsibly. Plus, for each iPhone turned in through the GiveBack program, Apple makes a donation to Conservation International, a nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting the environment.

Management and Recycling your old iPhone not only helps the environment but also ensures that valuable materials can be reused in new products. It’s a simple way to make a big difference.



While Daisy is a fantastic solution for consumers looking to recycle their old iPhones, businesses often require more comprehensive recycling services. For instance, companies like Express Communication provide specialized recycling services tailored to the needs of businesses. These services include the secure destruction of data, recycling of a wide range of electronic devices, and the management of large-scale electronic waste. Express Communication ensures that businesses can sustainably manage their electronic waste, complying with environmental regulations and reducing their overall impact on the planet.


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