Saturday, June 21, 2008

Disrupting "waste by design"

The blender and toaster. You will find them in almost any home, and I venture to say that the main reason any of them get thrown away is that the appearance becomes dingy, or simply doesn't match with the owner's new kitchen. Why not design a line of these appliances with interchangable shells of different colors, finishes, and textures? Think of the recycling opportunities!

The cop out is "companies are built around selling completely new devices, so 'reusable' doesn't mesh well". I wonder, has anyone looked deeper than this refrain? Perhaps consumers (ugh) would buy 3 or more of these decorative shells ($$) in the same timespan in which they would have suffered with their old, unisghtly device before throwing it away? That would surely offset the cost.

The first company to incorporate such a model into their business would surely gain the much sought after disruptive advantage

1 comment:

Nic Starno said...

How about old cellphones? Have you ever tried to buy an old cellphone as a backup or just didn't want to pay premium prices for the newest models and contracts? I have, and the only place I have ever had any luck was on eBay. No cellphone service provider ever seems to have an answer when I ask them where all the old models go, but I know exactly where they go, and it's a lot of wasted plastic.

Fortunately, companies like Samsung are on the right track with their trend-setting ideas using bioplastics and a cellphone recycling program. Since most of society doesn't care what happens beyond the garbage men picking up their trash, it's up to the large companies to set the standard themselves.