MicroEJ and Greenly New Study Reveals IoT Device Design's Environmental Impact

In our quest for technological advancement, the environmental impact of IoT devices often goes unnoticed. While the carbon footprint of smartphones has faced scrutiny, the carbon footprint of IoT devices remains largely unexamined.

A recent study by Greenly and MicroEJ sheds light on this issue, marking the first comprehensive assessment of IoT device carbon emissions, especially focusing on the impact of greener software.

It reveals that the pursuit of design ease-of-use can lead to unsuspected consequences: over-engineered IoT devices that result in increased carbon emissions due to the choice of power-hungry processors and electronic components.

Greenly has assessed the entire lifecycle of two comparable wearable devices to estimate the carbon emissions of design choices, shedding light on the environmental impact of software and hardware choice.


Key Findings From the Study Underscor

  • Impact on Hardware Utilization: The study highlights the substantial impact of software design on hardware utilization. By adopting low-footprint software solutions, manufacturers can minimize the need for power-hungry electronic components, thereby reducing the environmental footprint of memory and processor by a factor of 6.4.
  • Impact on Overall Device Carbon Emissions: Since production accounts for 70% of a smartwatch’s total footprint, the usage of greener software solutions allows for a 34% reduction in carbon emissions overall. This reduction is achieved by reducing hardware requirements and energy usage during use.
  • Cumulative Impact: When cumulated to a million units, the savings in carbon emissions equal the equivalent of 6750 return trips from Paris to New York!

What are the Measurable Impacts of Green Software?

To delve deeper into the revelations of the Greenly study and explore the promise of lightweight software solutions in mitigating the environmental impact of IoT devices, download the full report today!

Download report to find out more!

Additional Resources

EE Journal Podcast


Listen EE Journal Podcast “The Future of Embedded Systems: Sustainability, Containerization and Servitization”‘

Edge Computing World Webinar Replay


Watch the webinar “Leveraging the Edge to Deliver a Sustainable Society”

use case embedded sustainability

Use Case

Green Software for Sustainable IoT Devices