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Saving the Planet, One iPad at a Time

iPad Kills Paper, Saves Trees

 iPad Kills Paper, Saves Trees

Big box office supply chain Staples has announced plans to trim 15 percent, about 30 stores, of its brick and mortar retail space. It seems the company has experienced a steady decline in sales (i.e. the 9 percent decline, chart below, in papers sales since 2010) and the driver of the trend is Apple’s iPad.

“The No. 1 reason for softness in this business is the iPad,” Gary Balter, retail analyst at Credit Suisse, told the Wall Street Journal. “Look at how much less we print today.”

 iPad Kills Paper, Saves Trees

This is a cloud- and tablet-based and paper-free world. We’re already there, and all those trends are only going to get bigger. You don’t need a highlighter for anything on an iPad. You don’t need a 3M Co. Post-it for your iPhone. Five years from now, I predict that copier sales will be a fraction of what they are today — Cody Willard, MarketWatch.

The paper industry is a major employer here in the US and abroad. However, with global warming on the rise, few will lament the fact that fewer trees are cut down to feed office printers and copy machines.

That said, my family’s trusty Kodak 5300 AIO recently stopped working and we have no plans to replace it. With a houseful of iThings — iPhone, iPad, iPod touches, as well as Macs — we really don’t need to.

Has the iPad reduced your printing and office supply needs?

image Morgan Stanley via MarketWatch

  • Shubham Gupta

    ipad has not yet reached at that level where we can use it in place of paper. May be in future, the energy utilization of these devices can be reduced.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mindy-Bosatsu/100001162816952 Mindy Bosatsu

    @ Gupta The energy consumption and land use for manufacture, shipping, and storage of paper is not a small number in comparison with the energy consumption and land use for manufacture, shipping, electricity use and storage of iPads.

    But I agree the iPad’s power consumption, already good in comparison with traditional tablet computers must come down as well. The iPad makes a good replacement for a great deal of color printing in its size category but obviously can’t replace all paper uses.

    It CAN replace some smaller-format periodicals, B&W as wells as full-color books (but not the larger coffee table books), A4 notepads, corporate reports, forms, and some sketch pads.

    One must also consider that one of the things that makes the iPad more useful than paper is its persistent data connection to server farms (another energy issue).

  • Manny Lewes Krewes

    Killing fewer trees is good.