Apple sees advantages for iPhone as climate change worsens

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iPhone XS Max vs. iPhone XS size: Sometimes bigger really is better.
Natural disasters will make iPhone even more vital, Apple says.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

iPhone sales might be struggling right now, but they could see a surprising boost from … climate change?

Apple believes that the negative impacts of climate change, particularly the increase in natural disasters, will make its smartphone even more vital. It points out a number of reasons where the iPhone can help “in the arena of personal safety.”

Some of the world’s largest companies fear the effects of climate change. AT&T worries that hurricanes and wildfires could knock out its cell towers. Coca-Cola worries there won’t be enough water to make Coke. Walt Disney fears its theme parks will get too hot.

But Apple sees the silver linings.

Could climate change sell smartphones?

The CDP, formerly known as the Carbon Disclosure Project, has been asking companies to report their environmental impact — as well as the impact it might have on their businesses. More than 7,000 companies worldwide responded, including Apple.

Apple is one of 30 U.S. companies that received an “A” grade from the CDP for its awareness of the issue, and the steps it is taking to be more environmentally-friendly. That’s hardly surprising given Apple’s mission to be green.

What might surprise you, however, are the benefits Apple sees in climate change. One of those is the increased need for an iPhone.

Why you’ll want an iPhone during a natural disaster

“As people begin to experience severe weather events with greater frequency, we expect an increasing need for confidence and preparedness in the arena of personal safety and the well-being of loved ones,’’ Apple explains.

iPhones are ideal, the company notes, because they “can serve as a flashlight or a siren; they can provide first aid instructions; they can act as a radio; and they can be charged for many days via car batteries or even hand cranks.”

Apple didn’t provide any additional comments, and it decided not to respond when probed by Bloomberg.

Apple must be prepared

We shouldn’t be too shocked that Apple sees an advantage in climate change. Just like every other company, it must be prepared for the advantages and disadvantages it will bring — and indeed wonder how it will continue to make cash as it gets worse.