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.]