Just before Apple is rumored to be starting up the production line for the iPhone 6, the company has banned two hazardous chemicals from the assembly process, making the iPhone 6 potentially a lot safer for both its customers and the production line workers who assemble the device.
According to an official statement from Apple, the two chemicals that were in questions were benzene and n-hexande. Benzene is a carcinogen that has been linked to leukemia and n-hexane has been linked to nerve damage. Small traces of benzene can also be found in cigarettes, gasoline, paint, and glue.
Of course, when handled properly and when used in small quantities with proper ventilation, they’re relatively safe to use, but seeing as they were used in this kind of industrial settings (and where mistakes and accidents can happen), it’s probably a good idea that Apple phased out these two harmful chemicals.
The report states that Apple conducted a four-month investigation at 22 assembly factories and discovered no evidence of the two chemicals endangering any of the production line workers. In fact, only four out of the 22 factories contained even a minuscule trace of the two chemicals, both of which were at acceptable safety levels, but it seems that Apple decided to ban them anyway.
These two chemicals have to be replaced somehow, but it’s not said what chemicals exactly are taking the place of benzene and n-hexande, although we’d take a wild guess and say that Apple is choosing to use greener alternatives.
While it may not be a full, big step toward a more environmentally-friendly iPhone, it’s definitely at least a small step in the right direction. This could make the iPhone 6 the safest iPhone yet when it comes to chemicals used to produce the device, and we should expect the trend to continue over the next several years (and hopefully decades).
As for when we might see the iPhone 6 officially launch, it’s been reported multiple times already that the iPhone 6 is expected to launch on September 19, which is a Friday (with a possible announcement on September 9). If you remember, the iPhone 5s also launched on a Friday last year, and Apple is very consistent on its release timeline every year for its product releases.
On top of the larger screen (which is rumored to come in 4.7-inch and 5.5-inch flavors), it’s said that the iPhone 6 will also come with a higher resolution display, with 1704×960 being the agreed-upon resolution, which is a big step up from the iPhone 5s’s 1136×640 screen and will even have a higher pixel density than past models.
Aside from a larger screen and new design, the iPhone 6 is expected to come with an all-new processor (most likely the Apple A8), possibly more RAM, a better camera, and an improved Touch ID fingerprint sensor. The hardware of Touch ID is expected to receive a bit of an overhaul and will be more durable than the first-generation Touch ID sensors.
September 9 seems to be the day that we’ll see the iPhone 6 become official, but no other significant details were mentioned. Then again, we’re not too surprised by the expected announcement date, since Apple has been fairly consistent in the past as far as when it announces and releases new iPhones.
September 9 falls on a Tuesday, which is usually the day of the week when Apple holds its media events. Fridays are usually when the company releases the iPhone to the public. Last year, Apple released the iPhone 5s on September 20, and this year could see a similar release schedule, with several rumors agreeing that September 19 will be the expected date where the iPhone 6 will go on sale.
We’ve heard reports of an October 14 release date, but we obviously have our doubts there, and we wouldn’t bet on such a late release date for the iPhone 6.
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