Speakers aren’t what they used to be…
We’ve come a long way from boomboxes that play CD’s and burn through a case of D-batteries every few hours; or even worse had a cord to plug in. These days... speakers have their own rechargeable batteries, they connect to just about everything, they talk to us, and everybody has one, or more.
Unfortunately, like most electronics - they’re difficult to recycle. They’re made of several complex parts like the cone, voice coil, yoke, etc; and composed of multiple types of material such as plastics, aluminum, cobalt and rubber. They were designed to provide easy access to audio content like music, podcasts and digital assistants - not to be taken apart or recycled.
To make matters worse, speaker technology is constantly updating and improving. While this may be good for our listening satisfaction, it inevitably creates a need to replace your speaker with a new one at some point in the future; and in turn a continuous stream of obsolete devices that cannot be easily recycled. But that doesn’t mean we don’t try.
It's possible to extract precious metals like gold and lithium from e-waste, which saves a decent amount of valuable materials from a landfill. But the process is energy intensive, expensive and there’s only a limited number of companies with the ability to do it. So a lot of recycled e-waste gets shipped overseas to places like Ghana. Where it is “recycled” in unregulated facilities at the expense of the local environment and the health of the people that work there.
Most of the solutions to e-waste thus far have been focused on addressing the symptoms of the problem instead of its root. Instead of thinking about what to do with our e-waste - a 360 speaker company will look for ways to prevent its products from becoming e-waste in the first place. One strategy to achieve this is to offer a product that's designed to be upgraded instead of replaced. Transparent is showing us how this is possible…
Transparent Speakers are made primarily of highly recyclable materials like aluminum and glass, so if they do become obsolete or unusable they can be effectively recycled. But addressing the root of the problem means building a speaker that doesn't become obsolete in the first place. Transparent takes durability to another level by...
Selling a speaker with built-in compartments that can house and power new modules
Providing customer support for product repairs, upgrades and recycling options
Disclosing detailed schematics and assembly/disassembly instructions for their speakers
Check out their website today see for yourself how Transparent is helping to build a circular future.
“We are on a mission to become the first circular tech brand. We achieve this mission by making timeless, modular electronics that are forever upgradable. We believe products should get better with age and that companies are responsible for removing electronic waste from the world.”