Considered as a key ingredient in lithium-ion batteries, cobalt seems to be the new oil as the rise of electric vehicles have propelled car manufacturers to acquire the mineral faster than ever before. In response to the increasing demand, Apple is reportedly in talks to acquire cobalt straight from the mines to ensure supplies last for their products.
Lithium-ion batteries power Apple's iPhone, Watch, and MacBooks. As such, they have thinly veiled interest for the future of cobalt. Recent reports have revealed that while the tech giant has refused to comment on the matter, sources close to the company have revealed that they are in talks to acquire the battery ingredient straight from the miners as a response to the high possibility of a shortage. Furthermore, only a quarter of the world's cobalt powers smartphones and as such, there is a high likelihood that Apple might be doing the best thing to prevent the next generation of iPhones and MacBooks with far less security than the previous releases.
While Apple's rumored move to strike a deal directly with the miners arguably matters less than the batteries that will power electric vehicles, further reports reveal that it might also be a response to the reports that BMW and Volkswagen are closely monitoring the movement of cobalt. Moreover, buying cobalt from the miners will make it easier for Apple to control the supply chains, which means that if in the future there is a scarcity of cobalt, the tech giant will have enough for the next few generations of their devices.
Apple has yet to release a statement on the matter. As such, fans are advised to take the news with a grain of salt until further information is released. Regardless, most of the questions are expected to be answered in the coming months, so fans are also advised to stay tuned for more updates.