If you follow the world of tech, you are no doubt aware that Apple is planning to announce some new products today. These likely include a new iPhone model as well as a possible wearable gadget. The wearable tech arms race is escalating with Google Glass, the Galaxy Gear, and the Moto 360, and Apple's additions are expected to blow this field out of the water.
We love keeping up on phone and tablets, but it's important to recognize the less seemly aspects of the tech industry. Despite electronic devices ostensibly being an investment, they are manufactured with disposability and replacement in mind. Chances are you've gone through several phones in the last few years, sometimes for a stylish update but often because they just peter out at some point. This is hardly a mistake, and the tech industry thrives on your continued purchase of new hardware. Even after your old phone is gone, the resulting e-waste is enormously toxic and disruptive.
After everyone loses their mind over the iWatch or iGlasses or whatever Apple rolls out today, consider watching one of these documentaries that looks at why you're trading in your iPhone and what's happens to it afterwards. There's nothing wrong with wanting to swap out your old phone for the new model, but keep in mind the consequences of and business models built around this behavior.
Terra Blight – DVD 10630
The Light Bulb Conspiracy: The Untold Story of Planned Obsolescence – DVD 10648
Planned Obsolescence: Why Some Durable Goods Aren't So Durable – Streaming video