Everyday we carry around our mobile phones, relying upon them heavily in our day-to-day activities but how often do we as consumers give any thought to how these devices are made.
Take a minute to read about how mobile phones are made, and the process involved from the beginning stages of design, to quality control, to better understand how your precious smartphone made its way into your hands.
Concept design is the first stage in manufacturing mobile phones. Special attention is paid to the physical features of the phone to make it appealing to the consumer. Sleek designs and improved functionality are always the goal as companies strive to surpass previous models.
It is also at this stage of development when it is decided what capabilities the phone will have, such as standard things like text messaging and voice calls, and current smartphones have a whole slew of added features including GPS, built in cameras, recording, games and anything else the imagination can think up.
Once the phone has been designed, the next step is to identify and build or source the necessary parts that will be used, such as the case, keypad, control buttons, battery, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi enablers, and all other functioning elements.
The most important element of a phone is the microchip, which is more commonly referred to as the SIM (subscriber identity module) and allows the phone to function at the high-speed standard known as W-CDMA.
During the building process each individual component goes through extensive quality testing to ensure all parts are functioning well.
The next process is the actual assembly of the device. This is done on an assembly line consisting of several assembling machines that house the mobile phones while they are being built.
This must be done in a sterile environment by operators wearing clean suits because of the small size of the parts and their sensitivity to small specks of material like hair, dust and other debris. During the assembly process temperature regulation is also critical to keep the assembly machines running optimally and prevent the microchips from melting.
Once the phone has been assembled it moves on to the quality assurance department where extensive product testing is carried out. The devices are checked carefully to ensure the durability of the device as well as that all features and components are properly operating.
When a phone doesn’t make it past the first round of quality testing it is sent back for corrections and tested again. After the second round of testing, if the product still fails to perform it is rejected and never makes it to market.
Packaging and Distribution
This is the final stage of production before a phone can reach the hands of the consumer. The devices are carefully packaged with the inclusion of all manuals and accessories.
Once properly packaged the devices are delivered to various carriers and retailers so they can be purchased by the customer. Seeing what an extensive process making a mobile phone truly highlights the importance of mobile phone recycling when you’re finished with one.