The Global E-waste Monitor 2020 report recently released by researchers across UNU, UNITAR, ITU, and ISWA says that we have gone from generating 44.4 million metric tons per year of electronic waste (e-waste) in 2014 to 53.6 million metric tons per year in 2019. Additionally, StEP published a paper titled Future E-waste Scenarios which estimates that we are likely to generate about 111 million metric tons annually by 2050. Currently, around 17.4% of the e-waste is properly recycled, and 8% is estimated to be waste bin disposals.
To work towards building a future free of these staggering numbers of e-waste, Nirav Patel writes in his blog that they can curb this problem by lessening the waste that is generated by technology users. He shares that this can be done “by repairing our products instead of buying new ones and designing products to be longer lived. This requires companies and consumers to both embrace repair, upgradeability, and long software support lifetimes.” With that as his vision, he founded Framework, and together with his team firmly believes that we can try to reduce e-waste on a global level by changing what products we buy and how we buy them.
Modular consumer electronics built to last
Framework builds consumer electronics that will adapt to its consumers’ environment rather than the opposite. Alternatively, for those who have damaged electronic parts, there is room for consumers to breathe and not worry about replacing the entire system.
So, what are they fixing? They are fixing or bridging the gap created by electronic companies that force their consumers to succumb to their for-profit plans. By adding replaceable, repairable, and dependable to their manual, Framework has brought the ball to the customer’s court.
Late retro nostalgia
The idea behind Framework’s laptops is to provide a powerful machine that is customizable. Apart from adding memory and storage to the device, the customer can also customize the ports they want, bezel color, keyboard language, and motherboard.
True to the goals of the company, these products are also repairable. They will include the repair tools in the box, and publish repair guides and videos. The laptops’ frame is made of milled aluminum, enabling repairability and upgradeability without adding bulk. With 15.85mm thickness and 1.3kg weight, the Framework modular laptops are available in 13.5″ display.
Meanwhile, DIY Edition allows Framework’s laptops to be customized from their roots which is very reminiscent of the boom of DIY laptops from the late 90s. From the memory, storage to WiFi, and operating system customization, the configurations are endless.
In terms of their environmental commitments, power to the user approach, and not making touch-me-not devices, Framework has established a league of its own. This gives users much room for imagination, creativity, and freedom to choose how they want their laptops to be while taking a step towards being more environmentally conscious. The laptops cost $999 while DIY Edition starts at $749, both available for pre-order.