Tuesday, October 4, 2011

How green is the Kindle Fire? Amazon week - Part 2: Comparing Kindle Fire, iPad 2 and Nook Color

Yesterday we started our Amazon week to examine some of the impacts of the new Kindle Fire and other new Kindle products. Today we'll try to compare compare Kindle Fire with iPad 2 and Nook Color and see which device is greener.

First, we need to acknowledge the sad fact that currently only Apple publishes information on the carbon footprint of its device, as well as information on its eco-friendly features, such as having an
arsenic-free display glass, being brominated flame retardant-free, PVC-free, and so on.

Unlike Apple, Barnes & Noble and Amazon either don't care about the environmental impacts of their devices or just don't think it worth the effort of sharing this information with their customers. Either way, Apple's leadership makes iPad 2 the greener device among the three. Once Amazon and Barnes & Noble will change their mind we could make a meaningful comparison among the three tablets. Until then, Apple's iPad 2 rules!

By the way, if you look at the features comparison between the three below, published by OSXDaily, you will see that the Kindle Fire is lighter than the other two (although it's thicker than the iPad 2), so it will be interesting to see if it also means it is
more material efficient than the Nook Color and the iPad 2. Well, Bezos, we're waiting..

Tomorrow we will see what will be the impact of the new Kindle products on Barnes & Noble.

To read more on how green is your (and my) Kindle, visit our website at http://www.ecolibris.net/kindle.asp

More resources on the ebooks vs. paper books environmental debate can be found on our website at http://www.ecolibris.net/ebooks.asp.

Raz @ Eco-Libris

Eco-Libris: Plant a tree for every book you read!

1 comment:

globalschreibs said...

I'm not sure that you've framed this discussion appropriately. Apple may be 'disclosing' their product footprints, by they are extremely secretive as to how they've actually calculated them (even the methodology!) and provide zero information. The marketing claims are there, but they by no means are consistent with any industry - or government - guidelines. No information can be better than the wrong information sometimes.

Making assumptions about green based on marketing claims, on their own, can be quite misleading and just a regurgitation of corporate speak. The reality is that one can't know which product is 'greener' than another because - as you point out - the data is not there.

What we can do is look at business practices and total material consumption. In this case, the iPad is actually creating a market for products that do not displace other products (yet). The kindle, on the other hand, is at least displacing book buying... so there is an environmental trade off.

There is significant potential for tablet computers (e.g. Asus EEEpad) to reduce the impact of the PC market, but very few are capable of doing this today and the operating system/spec needs to support content creation for this to take place.