Donald Trump exclaimed that "we're going to get Apple to build their damn computers and things in this country instead of in other countries," in January, and now as Nikkei reports, Key Apple assembler Hon Hai Precision Industry, also known as Foxconn Technology Group, has been studying the possibility of moving iPhone production to America.
iPhones might one day soon carry "Made in America" labels.
"Apple asked both Foxconn and Pegatron, the two iPhone assemblers, in June to look into making iPhones in the U.S.," a source said. "Foxconn complied, while Pegatron declined to formulate such a plan due to cost concerns."
Foxconn, based in the gritty, industrial Tucheng district in suburban Taipei, and its smaller Taiwanese rival churn out more than 200 million iPhones annually from their massive Chinese campuses.
Another source said that while Foxconn had been working on the request from Apple Inc., its biggest customer that accounts for more than 50% of its sales, Chairman Terry Gou had been less enthusiastic due to an inevitable rise in production costs.
"Making iPhones in the U.S. means the cost will more than double," the source said.
The person added that one view among the Apple supply chain in Taiwan is that U.S. President-elect Donald Trump may push the Cupertino, California-based tech titan to make a certain number of iPhone components at home.
According to research company IHS Markit, it costs about $225 for Apple to make an iPhone 7 with a 32GB memory, while the unsubsidized price for such a handset is $649.
While it is certainly too soon to cry 'victory' for Trump, the mere fact that the prospect of jobs coming back to America has to be a positive one (and inflationary by the looks of it).