Go green: top 10 environmentally friendly gadgets for your home

Contribute to a cleaner future with the best environmentally friendly gadgets of the year so far.

The best environmentally friendly gadgets

by Ryan Houghton |
Updated on

With increasing carbon emissions and growing e-waste, we're seeing massive changes in the tech industry. Net zero carbon emissions from manufacturers, the use of recycled materials, and designs which utilise solar energy have drastically reduced waste. Hundreds of companies have made pledges to create environmentally friendly gadgets, with many now working towards a greener, cleaner future.

Brilliant environmentally friendly phones with modular designs for home repairs, headphones made of recycled plastics and even solar-powered battery packs for charging your smart tech. There's so much sustainable technology available this year, and it's only getting better.

The best environmentally friendly gadgets of 2024 at a glance:

Best overall: Fairphone 5 - View at Amazon
Best solar-powered charger: Solar Charger 26800mAh Power Bank - View at Amazon
Best speaker: JBL Go 3 ECO Wireless Bluetooth Speaker - View at Amazon
Best earbuds: House of Marley Little Bird True Wireless Earbuds - View at Amazon

There are plenty of misconceptions when it comes to eco-friendly gadgets, including that they're slower or less durable, but that couldn't be further from the truth. In fact, environmentally friendly gadgets are made to last: tough designs, efficient battery life and powerful performance, sustainable gadgets are designed with longevity in mind.

Finding the very best environmentally friendly gadgets at the best value, however, can be tricky, so we've done the legwork. Scouring the internet, breaking down the terminology, and finding the most competitive prices, we've compiled our favourite environmentally friendly gadgets that are bound to make a difference to your daily routine, all the while creating a greener tomorrow for everyone.

The best environmentally friendly gadgets of 2024

All prices are correct at the time of writing. Prices, stock and deals are subject to change without notice.

Best overall environmentally friendly gadget

Fairphone 5Fairphone
Price: $810.00

One of the best environmentally friendly smartphones ever made and an incredibly sustainable device, the Fairphone 5 is an excellent choice for those who value longevity, energy efficiency and brilliant performance.

Packed with cutting-edge hardware, including 8GB of RAM, 256GB of storage (which is upgradeable to 2TB), and an idle battery life that is unfathomable, the Fairphone 5 has everything you need for great performance for a long time.

What's more, should you drop and damage the Fairphone 5, they've got you covered. Skip sending your smartphone away, or taking it to a phone repair shop. Instead, repair it yourself. The Fairphone 5's design is modular, meaning that each piece is designed to be replaced easily. Break the camera? Replace it. Damage your charger port? Replace it. It's that easy.

Not only does this process reduce wasting an entire phone after taking damage, it drastically increases the lifecycle of the Fairphone 5, giving you years of performance.

If we were to nitpick, we'd certainly note its fairly mediocre camera, which is solid, but not exceptional. Nevertheless, for the money, the Fairphone 5 is an all-around solid phone experience, one that shouldn't be overlooked.

Pros

  • Sustainably manufactured
  • Designed to be repaired
  • Powerful performance and excellent design

Cons

  • Fairly standard camera

Best environmentally friendly solar-powered charger

Solar Charger 26800mAh Power BankHiluckey

The Hiluckey solar charger delivers incredible power to multiple devices at once, all by converting energy from the sun. It's ideal for those looking to charge on the go without relying on a plug socket, or for admirers of environmentally friendly technology.

Excellent for camping with its torch and charger features, this charger is built with durability in mind, so you'll never be left wanting as a result of water damage or an accidental drop.

Of course, solar charging does come at a cost: you're particularly reliant on the weather for great charging, which undeniably affects speeds. This charger is quick, but it's not exceptionally quick.

However, even the best portable chargers suffer from speed issues and it's a small price to pay for charging on the go. The difference with solar chargers is that you have the ability to stay powered up wherever you are.

Pros

  • Powerful solar charging
  • Compact and convenient
  • Designed to charge multiple devices at once

Cons

  • Not as fast as conventional charging

Best environmentally friendly speaker

Excellent sound on the go, the JBL GO 3 wireless portable speaker is a great choice for the environmentally conscious. Made of a staggering 90 per cent recycled plastic (fairly unheard of in the speaker market) this brilliant JBL speaker is also among the best-value options for music lovers.

Available in a range of colours, the JBL GO 3 has a beautifully portable design and a clean aesthetic that's incredibly appealing. The sound is also fantastically clear despite its lower audio output of 4.5W.

Of course, with speakers, a smaller size generally means a quieter bass, and that's exactly the case here. Even taking this into account, the sound is crisp and accurate – downright impressive for a speaker that costs less than £50.

Our main gripe is its battery life, which detracts from the JBL GO 3's sustainable ethos. At around five hours, the JBL GO 3 is certainly on the lower side of things, and with a 2.5-hour charging time, it's patently not the most energy-efficient.

Nonetheless, the amount of recycled materials used is impressive and a positive step by JBL.

Pros

  • Powerful sound
  • Great portable design
  • Made from 90 per cent recycled plastic

Cons

  • Not the best battery life

Best environmentally friendly earbuds

House of Marley Little Bird True Wireless EarbudsMarley
Price: $39.99

Perfect value and excellent quality, the House of Marley Little Bird earbuds are exceptional for those looking for a great deal on sustainably designed earbuds. Made of materials such as bamboo, natural wood fibre, and recycled plastics, the House of Marley Little Bird earbuds proudly display their eco-friendliness.

The energy efficiency of the Little Bird earphones is something of a marvel for the price. 15 minutes of charging and users can expect a whopping two hours of charge, which is rare amongst cheaper earbuds.

As for sound, there's a lot of bass and not much balance, but for the money it remains impressive.

Among the best wireless earbuds for value and the environment, the Little Bird earbuds don't disappoint.

Pros

  • Incredible earbud value
  • Solid design with plenty of battery life
  • Made of sustainable materials

Cons

  • Not very balanced

Best environmentally friendly e-reader

The definitive e-reader for bookworms, the Kindle is a fantastic device for conquering a long read, without struggling to hold a tome. Comfortable and convenient, the Kindle's papery feel brings the old and the new together, allowing you to enjoy your favourite books without feeling as though you're using a tablet.

With 12GB of storage (enough for thousands of books) the Kindle has an enormous library to explore, and plenty of brilliant features to get the most out of e-reading. Struggling with a word? Hold and highlight to get a dictionary definition, find the names of characters you're not sure of, and more.

The Kindle's battery life is up to six weeks from a single charge, which is impeccable not only for you but also for the planet.

When it comes to navigation, the Kindle can be slow – page turning is absolutely fine, but when browsing the library, there's some lag here and there. Some may argue that this is part of the Kindle's charm, but when you're looking for speed, it can get a little dull.

For comfortable reading that's incredibly energy-efficient and is also made of 75 per cent recycled plastic, you can't do better than a Kindle.

Pros

  • Light and convenient
  • Access to thousands of books on one device
  • 75 per cent recycled plastic used

Cons

  • Navigation can be slow

Best environmentally friendly smart thermostat

A terrific smart device that's perfect for reducing bills and making your home more energy efficient, the Google Nest Learning Thermostat requires no programming whatsoever. Instead, it programs itself from learning your patterns.

Watching your habits when turning the heating on and off, the Google Nest thermostat keeps house temperatures optimal without having the boiler running all hours of the day.

Touch controls paired with app controls, with the option to add Alexa to the thermostat, this battery-powered thermostat is phenomenal not only for your bills but also for the planet.

For some users, connectivity issues have arisen from keeping the thermostat too far away from routers, which is certainly something to consider if your Wi-Fi isn't the best.

For the best gadgets to save money on your energy bill, you can't do better than the Google Thermostat.

Pros

  • Incredibly smart pattern learning thermostat
  • Perfect for saving money and energy
  • Easy to use from your phone

Cons

  • Some users have connection difficulties

Best environmentally friendly monitor

A deal that's great for your wallet and the environment, the LG 32MR50C isn't the most energy-efficient monitor on the market, but it's made considerably more sustainable thanks to its refurbished state.

Re-assembled using replacement components, seller Laptops Direct has extended the life cycle of LG's stellar 32-inch monitor, saving components from landfill. Extending the lifecycle of tech gadgets is a brilliant way to help the environment, and it's perfect for saving money in the long run.

A fantastic 32-inch monitor which offers plenty of screen space for multitasking at a full HD resolution, not to mention its 100Hz refresh rate, performance on the LG 32-inch monitor is stunning. Perfect for gaming, and even better for office work, this brilliant monitor is great for sustainability.

Pros

  • Excellent 32-inch monitor
  • 100Hz refresh rate for smooth performance
  • A refurbished monitor is great for the environment

Cons

  • Not the most energy-efficient

Best environmentally friendly TV

With an excellent, vibrant screen, brilliant 4K resolution and recycled plastic design, the Sony Bravia KD-43X75WL TV is a great option for those looking for an environmentally friendly television that doesn't sacrifice performance for sustainability.

The Sony Bravia KD-43X75WL's eco pack reduces the energy consumption of this telly by a whopping 32 per cent, cutting back on energy bills and power usage considerably. A great size for any home, and with sharp visuals, this 43-inch model is perfect for relaxing after a long day, without the concern of power wasting.

At £500, the KD-43X75WL is particularly pricey, especially for a 43-inch television running at 60Hz. However, there’s no overlooking the sheer quality of its screen, nor its eco-friendly practices.

Pros

  • Brilliant picture quality
  • Well-made and aesthetically beautiful
  • Made using recycled plastic and includes eco-friendly energy features

Cons

  • Particularly expensive compared to other 43-inch TVs on the market

Best environmentally friendly radio

Wind Up Solar Radio, Solarbaby Portable Hand Crank RadioSolar Baby

Having a radio on hand is definitely handy, but a hand-crank radio is even better. Charge this wind-up radio in three different ways: USB, solar or hand crank, and listen to music wherever you go.

Not the most sophisticated of radios, but excellent for reducing energy consumption, powering this radio is as easy as leaving it in the sunshine. It doesn't have the booming power of a traditionally powered radio, but it certainly has its perks.

Packed with features, including battery charging and even a torch, Solarbaby's portable radio is perfect for camping, or enjoying your favourite radio stations wherever you lay your hat.

Pros

  • Three-way charging for power wherever you go
  • Battery pack functionality is a handy extra feature
  • Solid radio functionality

Cons

  • Radio sounds a little tinny

Best environmentally friendly keyboard

Logitech K750 Wireless Solar Keyboard for WindowsLogitech
Price: $69.99

Certainly a niche amongst the best keyboards of the year, Logitech's K750 is a spectacular solar-powered keyboard which eliminates the need for wasteful batteries or traditional charging. Powered not only by the sun but also by office lights, the Logitech K750 has an incredible three-month battery life in total darkness, which undoubtedly showcases its energy efficiency.

Comfortable to use with its chiclet design and ultra-thin profile, the K750 fits comfortably in any office space and transports well in a backpack. That said, the glossy design of the K750 isn't particularly appealing, cheapening what is an expensive keyboard.

A solar-powered keyboard is just a downright good idea, and it works as well in theory as it does in practice.

Pros

  • Great solar-powered design
  • Comfortable chiclet keys
  • Impressive three-month battery life

Cons

  • Design is overly glossy and a little cheap-looking

The best environmentally friendly tech gadgets: buyer's guide

What are environmentally friendly gadgets?

Environmentally friendly gadgets are tech products that have minimal impact on the environment, whether that's through materials used, a clean manufacturing process or minimal energy waste in use.

Environmentally friendly gadgets can be sustainable in that they are designed and made with longevity in mind, whether they're tougher, run more efficiently, or otherwise.

What makes a gadget environmentally friendly?

There are several factors to consider when looking for an environmentally friendly gadget, here are a few to get you started:

Sustainability:

A great environmentally friendly gadget is sustainably manufactured, that is, they don't waste precious materials and use resources that are finite or require processes that extensively damage the ecosystem.

Many tech gadgets use recyclable materials in their construction, including aluminium and plastic predominantly, which can be used time and time again.

Energy efficiency:

A gadget's energy efficiency is a measure of how well it converts and uses energy towards its designed function. The best environmentally friendly gadgets typically use less power than regular products to perform the same functions, getting you the most out of a single charge.

Recyclability:

Recyclability refers to how well a gadget can be recycled once it's no longer working. Once disposed of for recycling, the gadget's components and materials can be broken down or repaired for refurbishment of other tech gadgets, or melted down entirely to form an entirely new use altogether.

Repairability:

A great environmentally friendly gadget is often also repairable, thus limiting the need to completely dispose of it after it's reached the end of its life cycle.

Many smartphones are incorporating repairable designs which minimise the need for total disposal, limiting waste and increasing the longevity of products.

Are environmentally friendly gadgets worse than normal gadgets?

A common misconception, environmentally friendly gadgets are typically designed to work more efficiently and last longer than typical gadgets to minimise waste. Yes, there are exceptions to this rule, typically when certain capabilities of a gadget are limited according to its power source, but this is uncommon.

FAQs: your questions answered

Why should I consider environmentally friendly gadgets?

Environmentally friendly gadgets are great for both the environment and your bank balance. Purchasing products which have limited waste during manufacturing, use recycled materials and use a low amount of energy in use helps aid in the growing issues surrounding climate change and global warming, so you're actively contributing to a greener future.

A more efficient, long-lasting gadget also means you're spending less money on replacement technology, as well as less money to power the device, so you're better off in the long run too.

What should I do when I can no longer use my gadget?

When you're gadget, as durable and long-lasting as it may be finally reaches its end, you can dispose of it in either an area that accepts electric waste recycling, or at a recycling centre for proper re-use.

This helps to correctly break down the technology into its base components and materials and avoid any waste.

Ryan Houghton is a commercial content writer for What’s The Best, known best for his expertise in gaming, with a particular soft spot for PC gaming, audio tech, televisions and smartphones.

Diligently writing for What’s The Best for almost two years, there are very few tech products Ryan hasn’t had his hands on to review; televisions, headphones, folding phones and even LEGO, if it’s nerdy, he’ll be there.

His well-versed history as one of the resident techies at What’s The Best has kept him keen to uncover the very best deals, savings and offers for those in need of a cracking deal to upgrade their setup.

In his downtime, Ryan most likely has his nose buried in a fantasy book, or his eyes glued to a screen whilst playing a tough-as-nails Soulslike or leisurely RPG, indulging in most forms of escapism where possible.

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