Apple has submitted what might seem like an arcane filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) – but the document contains tantalizing details about the computing giant’s interest in blockchain tech.
The document – entitled “Summary of Apple’s Commitment to Responsible Sourcing” – details the company’s commitment “to upholding human rights across its global network of suppliers that support the manufacturing of its mobile communication and media devices, personal computers, and related accessories.” Making note of both its internal work on this front as well as its relations with supply chain providers, the document is largely a description of Apple’s efforts to ethically source materials for its popular products like the iPhone.
Notably, however, the Feb. 15 filing makes mention of Apple’s involvement in the drafting of “Blockchain Guidelines” for the Responsible Business Alliance’s Responsible Minerals Initiative. According to an RBA press release, those “voluntary guidelines” were published in mid-December of last year and “represent a first industry effort to define a common set of principles, attributes and definitions for the application of blockchain technology to support mineral supply chain due diligence.” The press release makes no mention of Apple’s involvement, but the tech firm is listed as a “Company Member” on the effort’s official web page.
The SEC filing also notes that in 2018, Apple chaired the board of the RBA and participated in a number of its internal committees and working groups, including “the blockchain team.” These details aside, the filing doesn’t touch on what Apple-watchers might most want to know. Specifically, if Apple is working on some kind of supply chain-focused solution, it hasn’t (yet) shown its cards.
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