Apple supplier accused of forcing overtime and endangering workers

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


Apple working with Quanta to correct labor violations found in FLA report

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


New evidence hints that iWatch production is behind schedule, delayed for Q4 2014

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


Apple allegedly brings new supplier on board to help solve iPhone 6 battery production woes

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


Apple joins ‘SupplierPay’ initiative to speed up payments to small businesses

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


Apple suppliers say iWatch has round face, goes into production in July/August

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


Samsung was Apple’s top iPad display supplier in Q1 this year

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


Apple’s Unibody enclosure manufacturer apparently commissioned to build iPhone 6 metal casings

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


Flextronics joins Apple’s supply chain as assemblers of ‘Made in USA’ Macs

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


Apple’s ops-chief emails troops on supplier responsibility

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


Apple publishes 2014 Supplier Responsibility Report

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


Apple supplier Pegatron using facial recognition to scan for underage workers

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…

Read More


Apple comments on death of 15 year-old Pegatron factory worker

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…

Read More


China investigating Apple suppliers over pollution concerns

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

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