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Dell wants to pump up reused material in products: Dell's SVP of Experience Design Group

Dell's SVP of Experience Design Group joined Yahoo Finance's Dan Howley to break down what consumers can expect from Dell Technologies into 2021 and why they're focusing on sustainability at this year's CES.

Video Transcript


DAN HOWLEY: With us now is Ed Boyd, Senior Vice President of Dell's Experience Design Group. Ed, thank you for joining us. I want to just real quickly jump into some of the announcements that Dell is making at CES this year. Obviously, it's a virtual announcement, so it's a little bit different. But can you just give us a level set on the types of devices that we're seeing in 2021 from Dell?

ED BOYD: Yeah. You're going to see, you know, a broad range of products in our consumer and commercial portfolios rolled out. Commercial notebooks are being updated. Amazing work has gone on around collaboration. So you'll see smart cameras and audio, more intelligent optimisation occurring in the products, you know, just to make, you know, the time that you're spending in front of the camera smoother and easier.

You'll see safe, you know, like, comfortable blue light management, that type of stuff occurring as well, just to make it easier to be in front of a screen, new displays. Our new UltraSharp 40-inch curve is coming as well. So just a nice array of innovations, but definitely with an eye focused on working remote and-- and those types of things.

DAN HOWLEY: Yeah, obviously a lot of people can relate to the working remotely thing now and probably in the future, as a lot of people are predicting now that there will be a new work-from-home environment. What I want to dive into outside of the announcements, though, is something Dell has going on as far as sustainability. And I know--


DAN HOWLEY: --that there been a sustainability project at Dell for some time. So can you give us an idea of what that is? And then we'll dive into what you're doing now.

ED BOYD: Yeah, fantastic. So you know, we've been working on sustainability projects and programs since I've been with the company over 13 years. You know, as a matter of fact, you know, just to give you an idea of some of the things that we've done, in 2014, we were the first company with certified closed-loop plastics that are going back into our product.

So if you bought a new display recently, more than likely the plastic material in that display was recycled from a prior display. So we're-- we're trying to close the loop on more and more materials in the products. We've integrated, like, ocean-bound plastics into our packaging.

We brought in recycled carbon fiber from the aerospace industry. We've been pulling pollution out of the air and literally creating ink and using it for printing graphics on our packages. So we're doing a wide array of things, and we're integrating recycled content and material more and more broadly across our entire portfolio. So there's been a tremendous amount of work going on to date to get to that.

And we're announcing some things here at CES this week, which will cover some of the first introductions of biopolymers into our products. So the new Latitude 5,000 Series and our Precision 3,000 Series products will roll out with biopolymers in that. And we're taking byproduct waste from papermaking process and creating this new biopolymer.

DAN HOWLEY: So I guess when you're looking at something along these lines of sustainability, is there a point where, you know, you can say every piece of a Dell becomes something that-- or comes from something that already existed, you're not going from base material to the product, you're going from recycled all throughout the system? And is that a goal in the long term?

ED BOYD: Yeah, the goal is, obviously, to close the loop. So we want to make sure that we're-- we're taking-- you know, we're responsibly pulling-- taking back our products. Our first goal is always to refurbish and get the products back into the market, so extend the life cycle of the products that can run longer.

When they can't be refurbished, we want to, you know, easily disassemble those products, take out the components that can have long life cycles like resistors and other components, and have those integrated into new products. The components that cannot-- or materials that cannot, we want to have those materials easily upcycled and then brought back into new components. And so we're trying to close the loop.

You know, it is a daunting task. I've spent a lot of time, you know, in recycling facilities around the world, looking at how just the IT industry in general, not just Dell's parts, but everyone's, and how those things are being taken in and ingested, and the materials are being separated and being reincorporated into new products. And it's kind of overwhelming.

So when we set our 2030 goals out, we set pretty broad goals, far-reaching ones. And we're not-- we weren't sure exactly how we were going to achieve them, but we want to make sure that we're taking back a product for every product that we sell, equivalent. We want to make sure that we're using 100% recycled packaging.

And we want with, you know, the vast portfolio of products that we have, we want to make sure that 50% of the materials that we're using are coming-- are either recycled or renewable materials. And those are-- you know, and to do that by 2030. So big goals that we've set forth, and I'm really excited about working on this initiative with the design group and Dell technologies.

DAN HOWLEY: OK, well, here's to a greater future for Dell. Again, this is Ed Boyd, Senior Vice President of Dell's Experience Design Group. Ed, thank you so much.

ED BOYD: Thank you, Dan.