Apple could make iPhones in the U.S.A. under President Trump, sources say

“iPhones might one day soon carry ‘Made in America’ labels,” Debby Wu reports for Nikkei Asian Review. “Key Apple assembler Hon Hai Precision Industry, also known as Foxconn Technology Group, has been studying the possibility of moving iPhone production to the U.S., sources told the Nikkei Asian Review. ‘Apple asked both Foxconn and Pegatron, the two iPhone assemblers, in June to look into making iPhones in the U.S.,’ a source said. ‘Foxconn complied, while Pegatron declined to formulate such a plan due to cost concerns.'”

“‘Making iPhones in the U.S. means the cost will more than double,’ the source said,” Wu reports. “The person added that one view among the Apple supply chain in Taiwan is that U.S. President-elect Donald Trump may push the Cupertino, California-based tech titan to make a certain number of iPhone components at home.”

President-elect Trump
President-elect Trump
“Apple helped its Singapore-based contractor Flextronics build a Mac Pro production line in Austin, Texas in 2013, after Foxconn set up an iMac assembly line in the same state the year before,” Wu reports. “Sharp President Tai Jeng-wu, right-hand man to Foxconn’s Gou, also hinted in late October that if Apple eventually decided to produce in the U.S., he would have no option but to follow his customer’s instructions. ‘We are now building a new [advanced organic light-emitting diode] facility in Japan. We can make [OLED panels] in the U.S. too,’ he said. ‘If our key customer demands us to manufacture in the U.S., is it possible for us not to do so?'”

Wu reports, “‘Politics will trump cost concerns in the end,’ the industry executive familiar with iPhone’s production process said.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Whatever happens, we just hope it includes Fembots.

President Trump’s Made-in-America hurdle: Asia – November 16, 2016
Apple assembler Foxconn now has 40,000 ‘Foxbot’ robots working at factories in China – October 5, 2016
Apple supplier Foxconn replaces 60,000 factory workers with robots – May 25, 2016
Foxconn robots better, but still not precise enough to assemble Apple iPhones – December 5, 2014
Foxconn CEO disappointed with current-gen iPhone-assembling robots; next-gen ‘Foxbots’ in the works – September 22, 2014
Foxconn to deploy ‘Foxbot’ robots for iPhone assembly – July 7, 2014
Why Foxconn’s iPhone robots could create American jobs – February 2, 2014
Apple dives deeper into designing and inventing robots, other manufacturing tech – November 22, 2013
Robots made Apple switch to ‘Made in the U.S.A.’ Macs – December 11, 2012
Foxconn’s 2012 plan: More robots, no layoffs, zero suicides, new factories – November 22, 2011
Foxconn to replace some workers with 1 million robots within 3 years – July 31, 2011


  1. I’d like to hear some opinions, which is better: a foreign company opening a factory in America (hiring lower-wage workers), or American company building its devices overseas (but growing revenue and profit, and hiring more high-paid people, by competing on the global market)?

    In other words, we have Toyota and Honda building cars in Kentucky, and we have GM and Ford building theirs in Mexico. Who is better for America? The engineers in Detroit, designing GM cars, or assembly line workers in Louisville?

    We also have Apple having phones built in China, then we have a Chinese company (Foxconn) building iMacs (for Apple) in Texas.

    In this massive tangle of multi-nationals, how does America do best for its people?

    1. Apple ultimately needs to keep from being squeezed by a single foreign source.

      Internally they will have to prepare options to use automation and other countries for assembly.

      It is unlikely to happen fast however. The volumes are just too huge.

    2. Pre: did you mean M-Pros in TX? Austin’s Flextronics is the place where MacPros are manufactured. Never heard of iMacs constructed in TX. Per the issue…would like to see Apple items made in the US, but I doubt it. Cost and worker #’s are limitations.

    3. Companies NEVER do what is best for the people, they follow the money )ie do what is best for the company). If Apple is forced to manufacture in U.S. they will do more automation which will reduce the workforce required. Eventually, when everything is automated unemployment will be 100%.

      When was the last time you heard Apple say “We are here to provide jobs”. Never. It is this:

      Apple’s current mission statement is “Apple designs Macs, the best personal computers in the world, along with OS X, iLife, iWork and professional software. Apple leads the digital music revolution with its iPods and iTunes online store.” Apr 23, 2015

      Nothing about doing what is best for the people.

        1. I wouldn’t hold my breath. Judging by the kind of people that are now milling around president-elect, it is a continuation of the same, just under a different banner. A sea of lobbyists, special interests and long-career Washington political operatives.

      1. My question wasn’t really what will, or should, Apple do. I was hoping for a discussion what action would be better for the American population, jobs and prosperity (regardless of how it would be seen by the corporations, be it Apple, GM or Toyota).

        As for everything being automated and unemployment being 100%, you say that as if it is a bad thing.

        In the utopian concept of perfect future, humans don’t have to work to make things anymore; when everything that we currently do (in order to make a living) is done automatically, from harvesting food, to transportation, leisure, manufacturing, there will be no need to actually have jobs (unless we want to). Kind of like in Saudi Arabia, or the Emirates… (where the locals do nothing but collect oil money, and the only kind of jobs in abundance are low-paying service jobs, done by the Philippinas and other foreigners).

        1. How do you reconcile utopia with the Philippinas and other foreigners? I guess they are not included in the utopia.

          Someone has to clean the sewers. In other words, I just don’t see your ideal perfection as being attainable. You drill down and you will find slaves (paid or not paid) at the bottom.

          Many utopias have been tried and failed. What makes your different?

    4. “… how does America do best for its people?”

      Open boarders with regard to trade and business. Anyone on the left or right who thinks they know better how to “manage” economic trade should be treated with great suspicion.

  2. Only possible using robotics in USA……or parts made and sent to China for assembly….

    Sorry but I don’t see CONUS workers doing iPhone assembly if the stock photos of Foxxcon Assembly lines are to be believed……..

  3. There isn’t a “Made in America” label since that’s a continent and wouldn’t mean much. In any case, the more robotic iPhone production, the more appropriate to build them in USA. The jobs could be technical, related to programming and maintaining the machinery.

  4. think about the:

    no update still at 2013 prices Mac Pro and the Sapphire Glass factory. The starting price MP D700 with 16 GB RAM and 256 GB drive and ONE THIRD GPU speed of a mid range PC card is $4600, hundreds of millions spent on the Sapphire glass factory: not one block of usable glass.

    don’t want to comment anymore as it arouses too much emotion and don’t want a flame war but people should ponder those two Apple attempts of USA manufacturing.


  5. The rhetoric I heard from Trump is any company that moves out of country will be subject to a 35% tariff or equivalent. Apple manufacturing is not moving out of country, it is already out of country. The way I hear it is future Trump tariffs wont apply to Apple.

  6. The irony of Trump “forcing” Apple to build iPhones in the US rather than China would be amazing. The people who elected him bought into his tripe about US jobs going to China (those went long ago, and now they are moving from China to places with even lower wages and laxer laws). And these are the very same people who shop at Target and Walmart where 95% of the goods are made in China and wonder why there are no factories in their town. If you’re looking for someone to blame for jobs “lost” to China, look in the mirror, folks.

    And no, production will NEVER come here. In the US it’s just not possible for an electronics manufacturer to say, fill a sudden need for 800,000 1.4 mm fine thread screws in a week, because that kind of capacity no longer exists here. It does, of course, in southeast Asia. Scalability is key. And the scale of iPhones is beyond that of any other electronic device.

    Further, this article just teems with ignorance. Apple has 75 US-based component suppliers. However, many of the American companies do the same thing – have production around the world. And some Asian ones have factories here.

    And unless corporate tax laws are reformed, Apple owes 35% tax on any profits from phones manufactured here.

    And why Apple? Why not make box fans, toasters, refrigerators, TV’s etc. all here while we’re at it?

    This Nikkei Asian Review article is a waste of electrons.

    1. your post gives lots of info.

      like to add:
      it appears only certain areas of the world today is it possible to successfully do CERTAIN kinds of manufacturing.

      Last I read a year or so ago even the Apple/Foxconn factory in Brazil is suffering. Brazilians apparently don’t like working in those type of electronics factories (probably extremely repetitive work). So it’s not just labour costs.

      REUTERS 2015:

      “When Taiwan’s Foxconn Technology Group agreed in April 2011 to make Apple products here, President Dilma Rousseff and her advisers promised that up to $12 billion in investments over six years would transform the Brazilian technology sector …. Four years later, none of that has come true.

      Foxconn has created only a small fraction of the 100,000 jobs that the government projected, and most of the work is in low-skill assembly. There is little sign that it has catalyzed Brazil’s technology sector or created much of a local supply chain.

      That Brazil has so little to show for the Foxconn investment underscores the shortcomings of its industrial policy, defined by costly tax incentives that have driven a widening government budget deficit without spurring growth. The economy currently hovers close to recession and the productivity of Brazil’s workforce is stagnant.

      …. Evandro Oliveira Santos, the head of the local metalworkers’ union, told Reuters the union was organizing for a strike at the factory. It would be the fourth in as many years.

      … When Terry Gou, the founder and chairman of Foxconn, discussed Brazilian labor in the past, his take was withering.

      “Brazilian workers’ wages are very high. But Brazilians, as soon as they hear ‘soccer,’ they stop working. And there’s all the dancing. It’s crazy,” he told the Wall Street Journal in 2010….

      … At the time the Foxconn investment was announced, Aloizio Mercadante, then the minister of science and technology, said the price of iPads in Brazil could fall as much as 30 percent (due to removal of import taxes).

      Four years ago a ten-inch iPad with 16 gigabytes of storage and no cellular card cost 1,549 reais. Today a new device with those specifications costs 1,599 reais ($520). In the U.S., it would cost $399. “

  7. Let’s see what Trump has in store for us …

    iPhones go from $800 to $2400
    Cars now costing $25,000 go to $50,000
    Imported durable goods double or triple in price
    Stock prices/DJIA/NASDAQ all fall at least 50% and more likely 75%
    Consumer buying and purchasing power fall off a cliff

    And presto! You have a recession/depression that rivals 1929 and makes 2008-2010 look like economic growth! How do the Trump lovers feel now? It’s simple economics proven decade after decade. Trump said it because he knows it will never happen. His Republican Congress will never go along with it and if they do they find themselves out of their jobs faster than the Democrats did in the 2010 elections.

        1. Botty,

          You think you know who I am, but you couldn’t be further off base. I don’t like Mr. Trump and probably never will. There are people in jail with more character and integrity than Trump has. Some of his ideas/plans are at the top of my list and I hope he can overcome Congress and get them done – Tax reform, foreign profit repatriation, infrastructure, reduced regulation, fixing health insurance, immigration reform and more. He has two years to make significant progress and the same thing that happened to the Democrats in the 2010 elections will happen to the Republicans. If you actually knew me and my views you would use a very different label to describe me.

          Regarding you – I find your agressiveness, international antagonism just another kind of bluster that obscures a guy who is probably pretty smart, but likes to play the bully/overpower others rather than engage is respectful debate.

          BTW, Kasich – a conservative without a social agenda – was my guy from the beginning.

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