iPhone 5 and iPhone 4S Among Least Toxic Smartphones


iFixit and HealthyStuff have analyzed the level of toxic chemicals found in 36 mobile phones, with the iPhone 5 and iPhone 4S among the least toxic.

The study, which was performed in order to discover what hazardous chemicals are found in popular smartphones, found that modern handsets generally contain fewer harmful chemicals than their predecessors.

Researchers carried out an X-ray fluorescence spectrometric analysis of 36 devices and assigned a rating on a scale of 0 to 5 (lowest being the best), as well as a ranking by chemical, component and "overall."

The process itself consisted of chemical analysis testing for 12 common hazardous chemicals, including bromine, mercury and lead. Component testing, meanwhile, was based on a breakdown by case, screen, solder, circuit board and other significant parts. The final stage of analysis constituted an overall assessment of each device.


Although the iPhone 2G was found to be the least environmentally friendly smartphone, the iPhone 4S and iPhone 5 were labelled a "low concern" at 2.69 and 2.75, respectively.

Other smartphones branded environmentally friendly were the LG Remarq, and the Motorola Citrus, in addition to Samsung's Captivate and Evergreen. The device that contained the least toxic chemicals with a score of 2.56 was the Citrus.

However, the report added that major cellphone manufacturers shouldn't "rest on their laurels" as "many toxics remain" in discarded handsets.

"The 'low concern' Samsung Reclaim had a 'high concern' proportion of arsenic. Twenty-four of the phones (nearly 70%) had a 'high concern' proportion of copper," said repair experts iFixit. "There is a trend of less toxics overtime, it looks like—especially for Apple. That’s good, but it’s not good enough."

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  • dxwarlock
    Why is this listed as an iPhone centered article?
    36 phones was tested, and iPhone wasn't #1, and even was the worst..yet ALL 3 phones mentioned in the title and header was all one brand.
    the idea of 36 phones was tested, and 8% of them was iPhone so base the article topic around it seems strange.

    Why not just make the topic more blatantly obvious for its intent:
    "iPhones was tested for toxicity levels..results inside (oh and 32 other random phones, if anyone would care about them)
    26
  • southernshark
    So instead of saying "Motorola Citrus, Least Toxic Smartohone", the author of the story had to turn this into an Apple advertisement, which virtually ignores the actual winner.
    25
  • Old_Fogie_Late_Bloomer
    What about the clouds of smug that so many iPhones emit?
    20
  • Other Comments
  • Marco925
    oooohhh... It's still toxic to an extent and it's not like i'm eating my smartphone. Everyone knows you have to recycle your old electronics equipment. Next!
    -5
  • ohim
    I`ve heard rat poison is very dangerous :-s
    4
  • Anonymous
    yeah, doesn't include the factories in china's toxic waste.
    10