Between consumer frustration and competition to green their notoriously wasteful and polluting industry, tech manufacturers have been taking steps to reduce environmental impacts in a number of areas, including packaging (the bonus is that most customers find the reduction and simplification of such to be a lot easier to open). Dell is packing its laptops in FSC-certified bamboo boxes and trays that also include a much lower volume of packaging ‘stuff’ than before. And HP redesigned its printer cartridge boxes after consumer consternation reached a fever pitch, and in the process, “cut down on 15 million pounds of materials over the course of 2007, including 6.8 million pounds of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) plastic.”
Apple, which has a checkered environmental past, makes a big deal about changes its made: “The new MacBook packaging is 53 percent smaller than that of the original MacBook. And smaller boxes are much better for the planet. Because smaller boxes mean we can fit more boxes on each shipping pallet. Which means more products will fit on each boat and plane. Which means fewer boats and planes are used, resulting in fewer CO2 emissions.” Not to mention it saves Steve Jobs some cash in the process.