A Little iPhone 4 Math: An Infographic Without the Graphic


According to the shipping box my iPhone 4 just arrived in, it is “9x13x19 CM” and “0.6 KGS”.

Not all that impressive, really, unless you’re comparing this one unit to a mobile phone of the past.

But multiply that by 600,000… now you’re talkin’!

600,000 * 0.6kg = 360,000kg, or about 800,000lbs.

That’s 400 tons of iPhones and packaging.

9x13x19cm * 600,000 = …a lot of cubic centimeters!

It’s about 1,700 cubic yards of iPhones and packaging.

If you put them into containers, according to this page, that’s 23 40’ containers. Imagine 23 semi’s full of iPhones and you have a good idea of what that’s like.

But, obviously these didn’t come via truck or ship. No, these came by air. Hmmm…

Since FedEx shipped them and they operate 777’s, and I like 777’s, we’ll go with that.

Each 777F has a capacity of 226,000lbs, so it would take four completely full 777F’s to handle Apple’s iPod shipments… if it could hold 171,000 iPhones per 777F. Turns out, each 777F can only hold 75,000 iPhones, with perfect packing. (Only!) Now we’re up to 8 full 777F’s…

…plus all the regular cargo from China to the US.

Yeah, that’s a lot. But I can’t really visualize a lot. How about in terms we all understand (in the US, anyway): football fields and racetracks.

If you put all those boxes into an endzone of your favorite football field, they would make a stack 10 feet tall. Lay them all out flat on the field, and the whole field would be covered… plus another field and 3/4’s of still yet another one—including endzones! Or they’d cover one field in a pile three boxes deep. Wow.

Got a dumptruck, you know, the kind with two axles on the back, plus some extra wheels for really heavy loads? It’ll take you anywhere from 120 to 170 of them to haul your loot to the football fields.

Stack the boxes big face to big face (for a stable stack, of course) and you’d get a stack 33 miles tall. Wow. End to end, they’d reach 71 miles. That’s around the track at Indy or Daytona 28 times. And the width of the boxes would make a regulation lane of 12 feet in width, so you could drive your car around Indy or Daytona on top of all those boxes. (Judging by this box’s strength, they’d probably survive a fairly wide-tired vehicle, too.)

That’s a lot of iPhones moving around the world. I would love to get a peek at the logistics associated with those shipments… Anybody?

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