With new 2019 Mac Pro design, Apple moves production from Texas to China

Tripp Mickle and Yoko Kubota for The Wall Street Journal:

Apple Inc. is manufacturing its new Mac Pro computer in China, according to people familiar with its plans, shifting abroad production of what had been its only major device assembled in the U.S. as trade tensions escalate between the Trump administration and Beijing.

The tech giant has tapped Taiwanese contractor Quanta Computer Inc. to manufacture the $6,000 desktop computer and is ramping up production at a factory near Shanghai, the people said. Apple can save on shipping costs for components given the proximity of many of its suppliers to Shanghai, rather than having to supply a factory in the U.S.

With the previous Mac Pro model, released in 2013, Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook trumpeted plans to build it in the U.S. Apple invested $100 million in tooling and other equipment for a plant in Austin, Texas, run by contract manufacturer Flex Ltd. Each computer was stamped “Assembled in the USA.”

An Apple spokesman said the new Mac Pro is designed and engineered in the U.S. and includes U.S.-made components. Apple said it supports manufacturing in 30 U.S. states and spent $60 billion last year with more than 9,000 U.S. suppliers. “Final assembly is only one part of the manufacturing process,” the spokesman said, adding that the company’s investments support two million American jobs.

MacDailyNews Take: As the Journal notes, assembling the new Mac Pro in China won’t affect many workers in Texas because “demand for the old model fizzled years ago” as it became clear that Apple had abandoned it as a dead-end design failure.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “Fred Mertz” and “TJ” for the heads up.]


  1. Yeah so if Apple knew the 2013 Mac Pro was a “dead-end design failure” why did it take another 7 years to change course and wake up? Lame.

    1. Ive was solely in charge of Apple’s recent design errors with the Trashcan Pro the most glaring, so I wonder if Cook finally got tired of getting blamed and got on Ive for it and the Board agreed and issued Ive the ultimatum: Resign or be let go.

      1. that’s funny, my sources inside apple have said numerous times that Tim Cook hasn’t been a person interested in quality, just money, and it is definately NOT Jon Ive’s fault. He was handcuffed to a design directed by the higher ups. You as an artist should know we can’t always design what we really want–but we have to design what our bosses or clients demand…even if its sometimes against your hardest fought objections.

      2. Interesting theory, JDA.

        No, I suspect Jony was forced by the players you mention to rectify his colossal design of a lifetime screwup MISTAKE of the flagship product that built Apple and he followed through with an awesome product regeneration.

        Possibly, he had marching orders or else. But I suspect his arrogant ego could not handle the redux, however nicely followed through as promised, and simply left on his own.

        One thing we know for 100% certainty, we don’t know…

        1. Flagship product that built Apple… Ive didn’t have anything to do with the Apple ][?

          One thing we DO know for certain is that, he is NOT concentrating on travel, advising charities, and providing informal advice to some small companies. Because… you know, he’s actually got some value even without Steve Jobs around.

      3. Well Ives, if he consulted with anyone over the design of the trashcan debacle which is doubtful, deserves to be let go or at least removed and then guardedly used. He may have designed the same thing if Jobs were still around, only Jobs would have had the good sense to nip that design path in the bud. Whereas Tim Cook stands around with a clueless expression and a “I guess so” because he didn’t know and he didn’t do his homework.

  2. This is just WRONG!!!

    On so many levels.

    The FAKE SJW CEO is only interested in PROFITS, not PEOPLE, not American labor, not human rights, not standing up to Communist dictators, not speaking out for women’s rights when the state tells you how many children to have and that’s just the short list.

    Shame on you, Tim!!! 🤮💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰💰

    1. GeoB, I never expected you to post such a clear description of Mr. Trump:

      “The FAKE Chief Executive is only interested in PROFITS, not PEOPLE, not American labor, not human rights, not standing up to Communist dictators, not speaking out for women’s rights when the state tells you how many children to have and that’s just the short list.”

      1. BTW, you misquoted me by changing words. Not a surprise from the lying liberal class that are desperate to do anything to take down our great president, Donald J. Trump. MAGA!…

        1. “MAGA!” Is the sound my dog makes when she throws up.

          If it makes you happier, I will gladly post again with your abbreviation, CEO, for the Chief Executive you described to a T. More evidence today of fawning over Communist dictators who share his disregard for human rights and who objectify women other than immediate family members. Kim had one of his former lovers machine-gunned; your guy just bought them off.

          1. 🤮 My Persian cat vomits every time the LYING FAKE CONSERVATIVE spews HATRED.

            “Why am I so doubtful whenever you are out of sight”


            Deflection … torments my heart
            Deflection … keeps us apart
            Deflection .., why torture me

            Play on lyrics from “Suspicion” by the King, Elvis …

          2. “More evidence today of fawning over Communist dictators who share his disregard for human rights and who objectify women other than immediate family members.”

            Almost forgot: Ahhhhh, poor baby is one hurting partisan liberal today that hates any positive mention of President Donald J. Trump in the media GLOWINGLY covering his HISTORIC trip to North Korea.

            What, not one atomic particle of credit for our GREAT president switching gears and tactics to work on a solution? The NK president was quoted praising the move on many front pages and I read the same in my morning newspaper.

            Remembering several past posts you said something like you would give credit to the president for economic success if you saw it happen.

            Both times, these three gents will help you out 🙊🙉🙈…

            1. It is exactly my point that President Kim is praising Mr. Trump for fawning over him. POTUS isn’t working for a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula, but seems content to let Kim keep his nukes while the USA retreats from defending South Korea.

              I said that I would give Fearless Leader credit if he did something to improve the economy. Still haven’t seen anything—positive—that is not just a continuation of trends that had already been established prior to November 2016.

            2. “Still haven’t seen anything—positive—that is not just a continuation of trends that had already been established prior to November 2016.”

              That’s because of your partisan blindness that you and your ilk practice daily. Stubbornly incapable of seeing the positives and only negatives. Nothing in life is that out of balance and extreme, however granted an EXCEPTION for Democrats like you and the liberal media.

              Even CNN, NYT and the rest of corrupt media have been forced to report the record numbers. But in a noticeable lifeless bland straight delivery, much different than the reporting style during the last administration. The most egregious partisan moment was from so called journalist Chris Matthews proclaiming a “tingle up my leg”. We all know this went on shamelessly non-stop for eight years from the fawning sycophant media. One more slam dunk example: Michele was on the cover of dozens of fashion magazines and she is definitely no model. Gorgeous professional model Melania has yet to be a cover girl since the election. Objective media died the day Trump was sworn in.

              The only “continuation” is there is NO LONGER an anemic “continuation” of the failed economic policies of the past when Obama admitted no “magic wand.”

              The same clueless cast are indeed seeing the numbers and success, then purposely ignoring the president’s popular policies that UNLEASHED the economy. Denial is not a river in Egypt.

              I could not care LESS Regarding your partisan IGNORANCE… 🙊🙉🙈

            3. Speaking of ignorance, you are apparently unaware that magazines do not put people on the cover based on their appearance. They give covers to people who have granted the publication an interview. For whatever reason (and we could all make some guesses), Mrs. Trump has chosen to keep a lower profile than any First Lady since at least Mamie Eisenhower. She’s a private citizen, so that is her right, but when she chooses to almost never answer journalists’ questions, her supporters cannot expect the same level of coverage as was given to First Ladies who made almost daily public appearances and press interviews.

              There may also be the factor that editors find women with active careers in public service or private business more interesting than women who retired from modeling around the turn of the century. In my experience, if not yours, even men generally find professional women who have had to work for their place in society more interesting than those who were merely lucky enough to inherit good looks fifty years ago.

              As for your assertion that the economy was in a shambles 30 months ago and has enjoyed an unprecedented turnaround, I remain astonished that you cannot read all the simple line graphs that disprove that.

  3. one of the reasons why the new Mac Pro was so delayed could be that Apple leadership didn’t want to take the political hit even though they realized that their USA plant wasn’t working. They didn’t want to different type of MP there.

    1) When the Cylinder MP first came out and production was moving fast they couldn’t get enough workers.

    “Flex’s Austin factory encountered problems finding enough skilled labor willing to work for minimum wage, according to the Journal. Then, as Mac Pro sales faltered, Flex began laying off workers in Austin, and by last year had a skeleton crew left in Austin, according to a former Flex vice president quoted by the Journal.”

    2) they they couldn’t get parts. Remember to build something like a MP you need an ecosystem not just an assembly plant.


    “The report reveals an interesting anecdote about the latest Mac Pro. In late 2012, Apple CEO Tim Cook touted that the computer would be “Made in the USA,” but sales were supposedly postponed by months in part because Apple could not secure enough custom screws for the computer from U.S.-based suppliers.

    machine shop in Texas tasked with the job could produce at most 1,000 screws a day, according to the report. By the time the computer was ready for mass production, this shortage gave Apple little choice but to order screws from China where factories can produce vast quantities of custom screws on short notice.

    Apple’s manufacturing partner eventually turned to another Texas supplier in Caldwell Manufacturing, which was hired to make 28,000 screws, the report adds. That company delivered 28,000 screws over 22 trips, with its owner Stephen Melo often “making the one-hour drive himself in his Lexus sedan.”

    The report goes on to describe how the United States struggles to compete with China’s combination of scale, skills, infrastructure, and cost. In short, American workers are typically more expensive and unwilling to work around the clock.

    In response to the report, an Apple spokesperson told The New York Times that Apple was “an engine of economic growth in the United States” that spent $60 billion last year with 9,000 American suppliers, helping to support 450,000 jobs. ”

    Apple tried to do the right thing by distributing manufacturing but it isn’t easy

    NOTE: the Problems with the USA Sapphire Glass factory (GT Advanced Tech) which collapsed as well.
    the Sapphire glass factory basically fabricated it’s abilities and reneged on contracts. Even after millions in bailouts from Apple it couldn’t do it. Later the SEC charged the factory CEO with fraud.

    And Japan Display.
    And the floundering Brazil Foxconn Plant. Quote from Plant Manager “When they hear soccer they stop working”.
    And the problems in India
    And the Wisconsin plant


    Flamers I’m not being partisan or political. I’m just quoting facts. Go check it out yourself.

    1. typo error :

      “They didn’t want to different type of MP there.”
      should be “They didn’t want to build a different MP from cylinder MP there. Because of problems with building the cylinder they must have agonized building another machine in the location”

  4. Tim Cook is not an innovator of the high tech industry. Left with a hit product, loads of cash, he just stumbles through. The trash can Mac Pro, the 4 different types of iPad, feels like throwing spaghetti at a board to see what sticks. iPad with a pencil sticking out the bottom, man that was really bad. I mean, the rest of us look at that and went hm, no, that’s the wrong place.

    Oh man, and the iMac, 21,27, Pro all at crazy prices, with forever before updating. The poor mac mini which should have gotten more powerful and cheaper sat for years. (an i3 never ever should be in Apple’s products. Apple charges too much for that one) The MacBook Pro and MacBooks, the keyboard, the battery, the graphics chips. What a mess! Product dumps, instead of releasing a different product cat every quarter or so, so that it looks like apple is always working on something new and at least refreshing its product lines.

    It’s time for Apple to move on from Cook. There are a lot of things Apple could have taken a chance on and stock buy back was not one. Buying back stock is an artificial share price inflator. Warren and crew love that kind of stuff, they can sell a few million shares and make the numbers for the quarter.
    I’m old, I would like to see some youth take over find a 28, 29 year old dreamer and let’s try for some excitement. A Mac Pro where you have to pull the whole case off to add a card, ram, drives seems to silly a design to me, especially when all you want to do is plug something in. oh well. And let’s have a younger design team. I see why these companies start to get rid of the 40+ crowd. We ride that horse to death. (iPhone and crazy high price, you know the margins)

    Some people have that touch to say and see the next big hit, and others can see that hit and bring changes to it to make it even better, others know timing, man, Apple misses Steve Jobs. He seemed to have it all. Oh yeah to those copiers out there, the reason why your products aren’t doing as well is you didn’t sweat the research. So you really don’t have enough blood, sweat and tears in your product. Samsung, Google, et al.

    1. “It’s time for Apple to move on from Cook.“

      Exactly! Like over five years ago.

      Unfortunately, the board needs to grow a pair and liberal board members ousting a liberal gay CEO when the profits are there, trading places back and forth as the número uno company of all time, seems highly unlikely.

      The geek user peasants like us Pros ignored for five+ years, removing valuable user ports and charging more, killing off beloved products like Airport and dumbing down software — the board could not care less about such trivial details most likely not on the annual report.

      The impending negative publicity from the liberal media probably keeps board members in line and some awake at night. They could not care less about valuable features and products customers love and adore shoved into the dustbin of history.

      The bottom line: The bottom line… 💰💰💰💰💰

  5. “I said that I would give Fearless Leader credit if he did something to improve the economy. Still haven’t seen anything—positive”

    I take it back. Above is your most clueless statement of all time.

    The economic numbers and several all time economic records established under President Trump are facts. That’s FACTS!

    It is not a crime to be partisan blind as you have posted here for YEARS. If Trump cured cancer, you would be the first to deny it.

    June jobs report 224,000
    Unemployment 3.7%

    Numbers not seen for decades. Rain on the parade all you want, FAKE conservative…

  6. The same month that employment went up by 224,000, the US population went up by around 590,000. Of course there are more people working, but I don’t think the President can take credit for the rising population (despite his best efforts). The economic trends are all rising on essentially the same slope that was established in 2009. The President hasn’t screwed that up, but he hasn’t materially improved anything, either.

    All of which ignores my original point, which was that Independence Day is a national holiday for our entire nation, not just a faction whose notion of enlightened political discussion is to spout slogans and threaten dissenters with imprisonment.

    1. “The President hasn’t screwed that up, but he hasn’t materially improved anything, either.”

      These three fellas will help you out… 🙈🙉🙊

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