According to “The Cloud Begins With Coal” which is a report written by Digital Power CEO Mark Mills, the Apple iPhone could be consuming more electiricity than what is usually consumed by a refrigerator in the average American home. Based on the CEO’s study, the iPhone at an average uses up to around 361 kilowatt-hours in a year.
The electricity consumption of the iPhone reached the level because of the power needed for wireless connection, data usage and battery charging. In contrast, a fridge of medium size and rated with an Energy Star consumes just around 322 KWh the whole year. Smartphones and tablets just by themselves does not consume such huge electricity. It is the applications which support the wireless connections, running in the background and which are always on which are the cause of the humongous power usage.
Owners of the devices do not need to worry because much of the electricity consumption attributed to it is not in the home but rather outside it. This means that it is not the power bill of the iPhone users which bear the expense. Most of the power required by the device is used in the site of the servers which enable the device to run. The servers never stop running and electricity flows 24 hours each of the seven days in the week. The server sites require air conditioning. Aside from this power requirement, the iPhone also contributes to annual electricity usage through the broadband networks it uses which uses electricity to operate.
Information and communication technology is a huge contributor to global consumption of electricity. Thus, it also contributes to the depletion of non-renewable energy which is harmful to the earth. The total electricity consumption of the ICT ecosystem around the world is 1,500 terawatt-hours every year. This volume could consume the total electrical power that Japan and Germany generates put together. Such amount of electricity is equal to the electricity required in lighting the whole globe in 1985 and the ICT industry is responsible for consuming 10 percent of all the electrical power that the world generates, Mr Mills says.
According to the Digital Power CEO, the electrical power requirement of the world will continue to increase and do so in a great acceleration and at huge increases. This is bad for the earth because it increases the carbon footprint which is damaging to the environment. Coal power plants produce carbon and greatly increase the dangerous footprint. In the United States alone, coal is the biggest source of electricity.
All around the world, almost every person has a cellular phone and other devices for communication and information gathering especially with the internet. Population continues to grow and so are the number of people who have the electronic devices which require electricity. Manufacturers will continue to increase their production of the products and the consumption of electricity. The CEO also adds that it will be way worse because mobile internet and cloud computing requires more electricity than wired networks.
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