manufacturing

New Samsung A5 plant in Austin

Samsung’s New Texas Factory for A5 Chip Production Now Fully Operational

If you don’t think Apple is making a lot of iOS devices, read the numbers on this: Samsung built a 1.6 million square foot, $3.6 billion plant in Austin, Texas to build Apple A5 processor chips for iPhone 4S and iPad 2 devices.

Since the devices are assembled in China at the moment I wonder if this marks a move by Apple to have an assembly plant in the United States. I’d love that. But, short of that, the more components in these devices that are manufactured in the US, the more Americans will have jobs even if the factories are owned by other countries, in this case, Samsung is a Korean company.

Made in the USA

Core77 has a nice post on a new Tumbler blog: Expletive-Titled Homage to American Made Goods. The new blog is FUCK YEAH MADE IN USA and it’s a brilliant idea.

More of us Americans need to attempt to do our small part by supporting and buying from companies that make products in the USA or who have decent working conditions for their workers. Good ran a piece on Best Practices: King Arthur Flour, Where Workers Are Owners and while King Arthur is a bit more expensive than Stop and Shop brand, we’ll be buying it from now on to support an American company that’s doing good by its workers.

In the early days of the Macintosh (1984), Steve Jobs built a plant in Fremont, California (east bay) that assembled Macintosh computers by robot. He did the same thing with NeXT computers. No doubt one of the reasons Apple products can be sold as cheaply as they are is the low cost of foreign production and Tim Cook’s sourcing genius, but how many of us iPhone users would pay a bit more for an iPhone that was made (maybe by robot, maybe by American workers) in the USA. I know I would.

Now that Apple is over the hump so to speak and doing very well, maybe its time to do an experiment to see how many Americans would be willing to support “made in the USA” vs low price.

Apple iPhone-maker Foxconn ponders big Brazil move

Apple iPhone-maker Foxconn ponders big Brazil move

Tech companies are keen to sell to Brazilian consumers hungry for high-end electronics, but gadgets are often priced out of the market because of high production costs and import tariffs. Apple’s cheapest iPad, for example, retails for about $860 in Brazil, versus $400 in the United States.

India had or still has similar stiff import tariffs making it prohibitively expensive to sell even low priced electronics there.

Apple iPhone-maker Foxconn ponders big Brazil move

Apple iPhone-maker Foxconn ponders big Brazil move

Tech companies are keen to sell to Brazilian consumers hungry for high-end electronics, but gadgets are often priced out of the market because of high production costs and import tariffs. Apple’s cheapest iPad, for example, retails for about $860 in Brazil, versus $400 in the United States.

India had or still has similar stiff import tariffs making it prohibitively expensive to sell even low priced electronics there.

Apple and Intel stop using conflict minerals

Apple and Intel stop using conflict minerals

More on conflict minerals.

I know it’s hip to dump on Apple for their use of “slave labor” over at the Foxconn plant in China but I do think they’re making an attempt to use their new global power to push for good. It’s incremental but it’s something.