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Did you know there was actual gold inside your smartphone?

Posted: , by Nick T.

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Did you know there was actual gold inside your smartphone?
If there's one color that's trendy among smartphones right now, that would be gold. LG, HTC, and Samsung have all already announced gold-colored variants of their flagship handsets after Apple kickstarted the trend with its iPhone 5s. However, did you know that there was actual gold inside of all smartphones? The shiny metal is primarily used for the wiring inside of chips due to its excellent conductivity and malleability properties. These allow it to conduct signals very effectively across the incredibly thin chip wiring. Furthermore, gold isn't the only precious metal that can be found inside of most smartphones and tablets. Silver and platinum are also used in smartphones, along with a number of rare and hard to obtain metals. 

So why aren't smartphone super expensive then? Well, that's because there's not a whole lot of gold, silver, and platinum in them. It is estimated that an iPhone contains about 0.0012 ounces of gold, 0.012 ounces of silver, and 0.000012 ounces of platinum. These are worth $1.52, $0.24, and $0.017 respectively. Of course, there's a bunch of not-so-precious metals found inside of phones as well. An iPhone, for example, holds roughly 5 cents worth of aluminium and 12 cents worth of copper.

These amounts of valuable metals inside smartphone may seem minuscule at a glance, but here's an interesting fact: a ton of iPhones would yield more gold than a ton of gold ore. Over 300 times more, to be more specific. Same applies to other elements, although the figures aren't as staggering. For example, 6.5 times more silver is contained in a ton of iPhones than what can be extracted from a ton of silver ore. That's why recycling smartphones, tablets, and just about any kind of electronic devices that aren't in use anymore makes a lot of sense.

So the next time you reach for your smartphone, regardless of its make or model, don't look at it as a mere piece of plastic, aluminum, or glass. There's real gold in there! And silver. And a whole bunch of other rare earth metals that you've been owning all along.

reference: 911Metallurgist

22 Comments
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posted on 24 Jan 2014, 08:26 5

1. Finalflash (Posts: 1158; Member since: 23 Jul 2013)


WOW.....just wow...must be a very slow day. I hope this was a fluff piece for the iPhone or something because even that would be a better reason (money) to post something like this. I think this is common knowledge since the 1960s.

posted on 24 Jan 2014, 08:27 5

2. akki20892 (Posts: 2699; Member since: 04 Feb 2013)


Who need gold in or on phone, Longest we have jewelry.

posted on 24 Jan 2014, 08:36

4. reckless562 (Posts: 545; Member since: 09 Sep 2013)


ok? :/

posted on 24 Jan 2014, 08:46 3

8. alterecho (Posts: 993; Member since: 23 Feb 2012)


Real HDMI cables too contain gold.

posted on 24 Jan 2014, 09:16 1

11. shuaibhere (Posts: 963; Member since: 07 Jul 2012)


I know that...that's why they have recycle plans in china(i'm not from china)....if you give them your old phone they will give 5% of money of they get from it...

"along with a number of rare and hard to obtain metals"

and those rare and hard to obtain materials are no more to be found...one of the essential materials is no more to be found...it'll be finished in 3 years..that's why samsung searching for new materials to make chips....as it's their business....

posted on 24 Jan 2014, 10:05 1

15. AfterShock (Posts: 1322; Member since: 02 Nov 2012)


So in reality, what does a ton of gold ore actually hold. It's not a ton of pure gold.

I'd guess it's no more then a pound at most.
Actually wiki and others say, a couple ounces.

posted on 24 Jan 2014, 10:44 2

17. androiphone20 (Posts: 1130; Member since: 10 Jul 2013)


too late, my iphone's in pieces already

posted on 24 Jan 2014, 11:09

18. maddy996 (Posts: 3; Member since: 06 Jan 2014)


I know whole the process,bcoz this is quite famous occupation in my city in India. ....

posted on 24 Jan 2014, 11:20 2

19. corporateJP (Posts: 1292; Member since: 28 Nov 2009)


Apple kick started nothing. Gold phones have been around long before Apple even made phones.

Ever hear of Nokia and Vertu?

posted on 24 Jan 2014, 12:54 1

20. darkkjedii (Posts: 9349; Member since: 05 Feb 2011)


So my 64 gig gold 5s, is actually gold. Raffi says it best, gold is good.

posted on 24 Jan 2014, 16:12 1

21. LordCaedus (Posts: 48; Member since: 01 Nov 2013)


They do realize that all electronic items have gold in them, right? Has been that way for decades. Gold is one of the best conductors of electricity in the world.

posted on 25 Jan 2014, 20:26

22. allenzhang (Posts: 5; Member since: 25 Jan 2014)


oooh...be richer

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