SPOKANE (Scrap Monster): The Washington-based Plastics Industry Association (PLASTICS) in association with Consumer Technology Association (CTA) has released a new report that analyzes the growing market for plastics in consumer technology sector. The report titled “Watching: Consumer Technology” also focuses on future consumer trends and economic indicators. It also explores the demographics, economics and technology that contribute to shaping up of key end markets in plastics and the public policy issues that are shaping the future of the sector.
According to Terry Peters of PLASTICS Industry Association, plastics have played a prominent role in the explosion of new and market-changing electronics products. For instance, plastics have been a key component in structure, circuit boards and wiring for large number of devices including computers, mobile phones, televisions and game consoles. The durability, light-weightiness and affordability features of plastics have led to increased popularity for plastics in technology industry. However, the significance of plastics in electronic products is not immediately evident to consumers, Peters noted.
The report notes that plastic is essential to the engineering, design, function, features and performance of cutting-edge consumer electronics technologies. Plastics are already critical in all categories of consumer electronics products-wearables, home technology, VR/AR, drones, etc. It provides the consumer electronics sector with a unique combination of performance properties that inspire innovation on two fronts-the development of new and better products and the more efficient use of resources. In particular, plastics will enable further connectivity between consumers, their devices and clothing and their modes of transportation and homes.
The report “Watching: Consumer Technology” investigates the growing market for plastics and forecasts new areas where plastics and polymers will become partners in innovation of new products and technologies. Consumer electronics sector relies so much on innovation and plastics play an important role in game-changing technology.
Plastics will be found throughout the future homes from appliances and consumer electronics to floors and windows. Plastics will also be used in the wiring and cables that are responsible for powering these electronics and transmitting the data. The report states that plastic wires and cables cannot be avoided even in a wireless or Wi-Fi environment, as the sophisticated wire and cable structure behind the wall is likely to use plastics extensively.
The report also highlights the importance and value of adopting proper recycling practices to treat end-of-life consumer electronics. One of the largest components of e-scrap is e-plastics. The materials in electronics are quite complex yet valuable. For instance, a laptop could contain half-a-dozen different types of plastics. It is essential to ensure best practices in recycling as some of these materials may cause harm to environment, if not managed properly. Estimates by the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) indicate that more than 4 million tons of e-scrap is processed and recycled in the US every year.