Foxconn hiring thousands of new workers for new iPhone

Foxconn has lifted its hiring freeze to start production on a new iPhone

Technology trends and news by Faith Merino
April 15, 2013
Short URL: http://vator.tv/n/2ec4

If you’ve been following Apple’s iPhone maker Foxconn, you’ll know that the company was doing great, until it wasn’t. And then it got worse. But now it’s better. Maybe.

The company announced Monday that it has begun hiring more assembly line workers, which many see as an indication that Apple is officially getting started on a new iPhone. The Taiwanese company said that it has added about 10,000 new assembly line workers a week in Zhengzhou since the last week of March. Its Zhengzhou facility is its main iPhone production facility. That’s after freezing all new hires following the holiday season.

While Foxconn didn’t go so far as to state explicitly that it is ramping up hiring to prepare for an onslaught of new iPhone orders, a company spokesperson did say that the company would continue to increase hiring in Zhengzhou to meet the seasonal demands of its clients.

Oh, but what’s this? An anonymous tipster?

"We have been very busy recently as we will start mass-producing the new iPhone soon," an unnamed Foxconn executive told the Wall Street Journal.

Other sources told WSJ that Apple is expected to begin production on the next iPhone in the second quarter of 2013.

There have been some rumblings of a possible iPhone 5S—a four-inch device featuring in-cell touch technology, which would integrate the LCD and touch recognition into one panel instead of stacking it in layers. That would make for a thinner display.

Apple is also expected to debut a cheaper iPhone made with a plastic case instead of aluminum. Rumor has it that the plastic iPhone would come in different colors as well.

Today’s news comes days after Hon Hai—Foxconn’s parent company—reported its largest drop in sales since 2000. Revenue dropped a full 19% last quarter, compared to the year-ago quarter. With reportedly 60-70% of its revenue coming from Apple, Foxconn’s weak earnings appear to stem from the iPhone 5’s poor performance in the market.

"A quarterly decline was expected, but not a yearly decline," said KGI Securities analyst Ming-chi Kuo told Reuters. "This shows that Hon Hai's revenue depends too much on Apple, and iPhone orders corrected more than expected."

Of course, Hon Hai’s other partners include Dell, Nokia, and Hewlett-Packard, so Apple can’t shoulder all the blame.


Image source: bloomberg.com

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