By Cody Lee on Sep 4, 2014
An Apple supplier has once gain come under scrutiny for labor violations. Both Green America and China Labor Watch are reporting that Catcher, who is responsible for making iPad and MacBook casings for the company, is endangering and exploiting its workers.
At its factory in Suqian, China, Catcher is accused of failing to provide adequate protective equipment for employees handling toxic materials, and various other safety violations. The manufacturer is also charged with forcing overtime: 10+ hours per day, 6 days a week. Read More
By Cody Lee on Aug 15, 2014
Apple is once again being criticized for the behavior of one of its Asian supply chain partners. The Fair Labor Association (or FLA) has released a new report, auditing two factories operated by the company’s partner Quanta, and it found quite a bit of non-compliance at both facilities.
The issues detailed in the report range from inappropriate recruitment fees, to extended overtime. In fact, the FLA found that 62% of Quanta employees at its Changshu plant failed to receive mandatory rest days at least once over a three-month period during the fourth quarter of 2012… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Jul 29, 2014
The iWatch, Apple’s alleged fitness/health wearable device, may not launch in November alongside a 5.5-inch iPhone 6, as previously rumored.
If a revised guidance for the third calendar quarter of 2014 by Apple supplier TPK Holdings is an indication, ongoing production issues are to be blamed that the gizmo is running behind schedule and is now said to launch by the end of the fourth quarter.
Although TPK during its quarterly conference call with analysts did not mention Apple by name – nor has the Taiwanese supplier blamed Apple for its poor third-quarter performance – the iPhone maker is its biggest client and the rumor-mill did identify TPK as a supplier of flexible iWatch displays… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Jul 15, 2014
Problems with mass production of ultra-thin batteries is among the reasons cited for a rumored delay of a 5.5-inch iPhone 6 model.
Last month, Asian sources said both LG Chemical and Samsung, Apple’s battery cell suppliers for the iPhone, were struggling to produce battery components measuring 2mm or less.
Apple’s technical requirements apparently pose technical challenges as standard smartphone batteries have a thickness of roughly 2.8 – 2.9 millimeters. A new report alleges that Apple has now solved the issue by bringing a new supplier on board, Hsin Chu, Taiwan-based Simplo Technologies… Read More
By Cody Lee on Jul 12, 2014
Apple has joined Coca-Cola, IBM and other major companies as an early adopter in the new White House ‘SupplierPay’ program. The initiative is aimed at accelerating payments from these larger firms to smaller businesses in their supply chain.
The program is a private-sector extension of QuickPay, another federal initiative designed to ensure small contractors are paid within 15 days of submitting an invoice. This helps them avoid borrowing money, increasing their chances to succeed… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on May 28, 2014
With five days until Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference, rumors are swirling that the company could announce some new hardware at the five-day conference and pundits are holding their breath for a long-awaited iWatch announcement.
According to the latest supply chain chatter, the device will indeed resemble a traditional wrist-worn watch and will even have a rounded face. Jump past the fold for the full reveal… Read More
By Cody Lee on May 12, 2014
Despite their frequent disputes in the court room, Apple and Samsung remain close supply chain partners. The Cupertino company has been trying to distance itself, but Samsung still makes a number of components used in the firm’s line of mobile products.
In fact, according to a new report by ZDNet Korea, the South Korean tech giant was Apple’s number one iPad display supplier in the first quarter this year. The outlet says Samsung claimed the top spot by shipping 5.4 million panels for the iPad Air during Q1… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Apr 23, 2014
The metal casing of the next iPhone will be made by Catcher Technology, according to Far East media outlets who on Wednesday relayed analyst notes by investment firms Barclays and Morgan Stanley.
Apparently, Catcher has secured a nice chunk of metal casing orders for the upcoming iPhone 6.
If true, this suggests that the iPhone maker is currenly in the process of cherry-picking suppliers that will provide components for the handset.
A report recently claimed that mass production of a 4.7-inch iPhone model is scheduled to commence in July, ahead of a rumored September introduction… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Feb 14, 2014
As part of the 2014 Supplier Responsibility Report that was published yesterday, Apple has refreshed its Supplier Responsibility website with a newly updated list of component suppliers and major manufacturing locations where Apple’s gadgets are being assembled.
Bloomberg analyzed Apple’s public documents and discovered that Flextronics International Ltd. has now joined the company’s supply chain as assemblers of ‘Made in USA’ Macs. Although Flextronics now gets to assemble Macs in Apple’s $100 million Austin, Texas plant, Foxconn remains the largest manufacturer of Apple products, with seven assembly locations in China and Brazil… Read More
By Christian Zibreg on Feb 13, 2014
Apple’s Senior Vice President of Operations, Jeff Williams, has issued an internal memo to Apple employees following the company’s newly published 2014 Supplier Responsibility Report. Williams was promoted to the position as Tim Cook’s long-time right hand man. Before being named CEO, Tim Cook used to run Apple’s vast network of suppliers and manufacturer for years.
This is the first time Williams penned an internal memo to troops regarding Apple’s environmental strides. The full contents of the memo can be read after the break… Read More
By Cody Lee on Feb 13, 2014
Apple this morning published its annual Supplier Responsibility Report to its website. The report details the company’s Supplier Code of Conduct and the lengths it has gone through in the past year to ensure its suppliers and their materials are on the up-and-up.
One of the more notable items from the report is that Apple says that all active, identified tantalum smelters in its supply chain were validated as conflict-free by third-party auditors. This means that all of Apple’s suppliers are using only verified tantalum sources… Read More
By Cody Lee on Dec 16, 2013
Following the death of a 15 year-old factory worker, The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Pegatron is using facial recognition technology to screen applicants for its iPhone plant. Pegatron manufactures the iPhone 5c and other products for Apple.
The company is using the tech to match real faces with those on government-issued IDs. This form of authentication helps to weed out those with borrowed or forged IDs, which is believed to be how the 15 year-old was able to get past initial screening…
By Cody Lee on Dec 12, 2013
Apple and its Asian supplier Pegatron, which manufactures the iPhone 5c, have come under heavy fire this week following the unexplained deaths of at least five factory workers. Even worse is that one of them, a boy, was just 15 years old.
It’s since been determined that the teenager used forged identity documents saying he was 20 years old to get the job. And today, Apple gave an official statement on the incident, saying it has sent independent medical experts to investigate…
By Cody Lee on Aug 5, 2013
Authorities in China are investigating two Taiwan-based Apple suppliers over pollution concerns, according to a new report by The Wall Street Journal. Environmental regulators believe that both UniMicron and Foxconn are knowingly polluting their water tables.
The investigation follows accusations made last week by Chinese activist Ma Jun and a number of nonprofit organizations. They claim that factories in Kunshan, China belonging to the two companies are guilty of releasing water tainted by toxic metals into the rivers… Read More
By Cody Lee on Jul 29, 2013
New York-based China Labor Watch has accused Apple manufacturing partner Pegatron of ‘serious’ labor violations this morning. In a new report out today, the organization claims the device-maker is committing of 86 labor rights violations in three of its factories.
Among the infractions listed in the filing are the employment of underage workers, insufficient employee wages, and poor working conditions. In all, the watchdog group says that it found Pegatron to be guilty of 36 legal infringements and 50 ethical infringements… Read More
By Cody Lee on Jul 12, 2013
Apple updated its supplier page late last night, saying that it has decided to head up a “fact-finding visit” to Bangka Island, Indonesia to address concerns on whether or not its suppliers are sourcing tin from unregulated and illegal mines.
Bangka Island is one of the world’s premier tin-producing regions. But the area has also been linked to illegal tin mines that are, among other things, responsible for the destruction of tropical forests, coral reefs and fishermen’s livelihoods… Read More
By Ed Sutherland on Mar 11, 2013
Spring is just around the corner, the sun is shining and new concerns about Apple suppliers appear like so many dandelions. Never mind CEO Tim Cook said it’s impossible to determine the health of the iPhone maker simply by looking at suppliers.
Just as Washington, DC trades in political rumors, Wall Street and Silicon Valley are back with new scuttlebutt about Apple’s supply chain.
As a result, Apple’s stock dipped lower Monday on word that orders to suppliers were the worst on record – at least for one analyst. Others believe higher sales of iPad minis versus the larger tablet is cause for concern, while still others forecast a slow summer and then return to profitability… Read More
By Cody Lee on Mar 6, 2013
About this time last year, Apple was dealing with a wealth of bad press over the working conditions at its Asian suppliers. The New York Times painted a particularly bleak picture of the situation, with underpaid, underaged, overworked employees.
Since then, the company has really stepped up its game in supplier responsibility. The companies who used underage workers have been cut, workers have received pay raises, and as of January, 99% of them came in under the 60-hour work week limit… Read More
By Cody Lee on Jan 25, 2013
Back in November, some folks started seeing “Assembled in the USA” etched into the backs of their iMacs. This obviously led to the conclusion that Apple has been quietly moving some of its assembly operations from China to the United States.
Today we learn where, at least some of, those Macs are being put together. In a recent update to its Supplier Responsibility page, Apple has named Quanta Computer Inc., in its Fremont, California plant, as a final assembler for its Mac computers… Read More
By Cody Lee on Jan 25, 2013
Apple released its latest Supplier Responsibility report late last night, detailing 339 audits focused on the plants and suppliers that help make its hardware. These were internal audits, which are separate from those performed by the Fair Labor Association.
While Apple was quick to point out supplier compliance, an impressive 92%, it also mentioned that it has severed its relationship with a China-based third-party labor supplier after discovering a conspiracy to employ dozens of underage workers… Read More