Winners and Losers: Apple cuts carbon emissions and PSN goes down

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It’s Sunday again, meaning its time for another edition of Winners and Losers. Read on to discover the best and worst news from the past week. 

If one thing’s for sure, this week certainly wasn’t short on smartphone news. Nothing confirmed that it’d be releasing the mysterious Nothing phone (1) this summer, while Xiaomi officially brought its flagship Xiaomi 12 series to the UK. 

OnePlus even went so far as to literally launch the OnePlus 10 Pro into space. 

However, none of these won the title of our winner (or loser) this week… 

Winner: Apple 

This week, Apple announced that the aluminium in its iPhone SE (2022) would be manufactured and recycled using a newly-developed, low-carbon process

The aluminium set to be used in the SE is the first batch of commercial-purity, low-carbon aluminium produced by ELYSIS – a joint aluminium manufacturing venture between Alcoa and Rio Tinto – at its Industrial Research and Development Centre in Quebec, Canada. 

It marks the first aluminium to be manufactured at an industrial scale outside of a lab without creating any direct carbon emissions during smelting. In fact, by using hydroelectricity instead of fossil fuels, the smelting process will actually create oxygen. 

The new technologies were funded through Apple’s multi-billion dollar Green Bonds scheme, which the company is currently using to support 50 projects chosen to help it reach its goal of having a completely carbon neutral supply chain by 2030. 

Aside from the low-carbon aluminium in the iPhone SE, Apple’s latest iPads, MacBook Pro, MacBook Air, Mac Mini and Apple Watch all feature enclosures built using 100 percent recycled aluminium. 

It’s always positive to see tech companies lessen their impact on the environment. Hopefully, this latest update puts Apple on track to reach its carbon neutral goal by 2030 (or preferably, much earlier). 

Loser: Sony 

Our loser this week is Sony, after gamers reported major disruptions on its PlayStation Network (PSN) throughout Wednesday. 

The PS4 and PS5 network outages temporarily pulled the plug on games with online features, meaning many Elden Ring, FIFA, and Destiny players were unable to access online services as the problem persisted. Similar issues were reported by gamers struggling to access multiplayer services in Rocket League and Final Fantasy 14

According to Sony’s PSN status page, PlayStation Now, the PlayStation Store, and gaming and social were among the services identified to be experiencing outages at the time. 

Some users assured they were still able to load up games that did not require a PS Plus membership, meaning its possible the culprit was the subscription service. 

All of the above took place between 9am and 4pm on the weekday, meaning that, regardless of why PSN was down, anyone who took the day off work to catch up with friends in their favourite multiplayer game picked a terrible day to do it.

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