Apple’s failed sapphire crystal manufacturing facility in Mesa, Arizona will be repurposed to produce server assembly cabinets for the Cupertino firm’s global data centers, according to a notification published by the Federal Register and cited yesterday by Business Insider.
Apple already has authority to produce certain components for consumer electronics in a special zone that exempts it from customs duty payments, but now it’s looking for approval from the Foreign-Trade Zones Board to produce “finished products and foreign status materials and components” in the Mesa factory.
In February of last year, the Cupertino firm announced that it will be spending to the tune of two billion dollars on the construction of two huge data centers in Ireland and Denmark that will make iCloud and other services more performant and reliable for European customers. As per The Copenhagen Post, the Denmark facility is located in Foulum.
Foulum is a small town located just outside of Viborg, a city in central Jutland that is home to Aarhus University and agricultural research facilities. Additionally, the iPhone maker reportedly signed a multi-year clean energy deal with Aarhus University on a new biogas research and development project.
Following months of back and forth between Apple and Ireland’s independent planning body An Bord Pleanála, plans for a massive $1 billion data center in Galway County have been approved, reports Business Insider. “Despite opposition from a number of individuals and local businesses,” Apple’s been granted the go-ahead to build the first stage of the data center on a 197-hectare site.
The facility will support Apple’s online services for customers in Europe, including the iTunes Store, App Store, iMessage, Maps and Siri.
Apple has reportedly started buying servers from a government-backed Chinese firm, called Inspur, to use in its data centers, Taiwanese publication DigiTimes reported this morning. Apple’s never confirmed nor denied industry speculation that much of its iCloud data centers run on Amazon’s Web Services and Microsoft’s Azure platforms.
That being said, Apple’s reportedly embarked on a project to migrate iCloud services to its own data centers in order to satisfy increasing demand for iOS devices, reduce expenses and further reduce any possibility of attacks on the iCloud platform.