Donald Trump To Tim Cook: Let’s Bring iPhone Manufacturing Back To America
It would seem that U.S. President-elect Donald Trump wants Tim Cook to “make America great again” in his own way – by bringing the manufacturing of the iPhone and other Apple products back to the United States.
The Inquisitr noted in a report last week that Apple phones, despite being “designed in California,” are actually assembled in China, and it has been that way since the launch of the very first iPhone in 2007. While Apple was already quite a big deal back then, it wasn’t a huge tech titan like it is in the present day, and cheaper labor was the main factor that enticed the Cupertino, California, company to bring iPhone manufacturing to China. For close to a decade, Foxconn, Pegatron, and other overseas firms have been contracted to manufacture the iPhone and other Apple gadgets.
That, however, may be changing if Donald Trump has his way with Tim Cook. According to a lengthy interview with the New York Times, the president-elect spoke to the Apple chief executive over the phone and said he would like for Apple to have American firms manufacture its products instead. Trump even intimated that he would consider it an “achievement” if he’s able to convince Apple to build a major American manufacturing facility.
“I said, ‘Tim, you know one of the things that will be a real achievement for me is when I get Apple to build a big plant in the United States, or many big plants in the United States, where instead of going to China, and going to Vietnam, and going to the places that you go to, you’re making your product right here.'”
Trump added in his interview with the New York Times that he wanted to incentivize the request to Cook and was generally very persuasive in trying to sell the Apple head honcho on the benefits of manufacturing the iPhone in the United States.
“I said: ‘I think we’ll create the incentives for you, and I think you’re going to do it. We’re going for a very large tax cut for corporations, which you’ll be happy about.’ But we’re going for big tax cuts, we have to get rid of regulations, regulations are making it impossible. Whether you’re liberal or conservative, I mean I could sit down and show you regulations that anybody would agree are ridiculous.”
Bringing Apple product manufacturing back to the U.S., however, may be something that’s easier said than done, the Verge suggested. The tech publication’s report noted that manufacturing space in America hasn’t created a lot of jobs, with millions of jobs disappearing over the past 15 or so years. That means applying pressure on Apple to manufacture the iPhone and other products in America might only end up futile. The Verge quoted late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, who, shortly before his death in 2011, told President Obama that those manufacturing jobs “aren’t coming back.”
Another pitfall mentioned in The Verge’s report was the potential lack of efficiency that would result from a supply chain whose branches are located in different countries. As these features, or branches, are located in similar parts of the world at the present, it might not be easy to replicate such efficiency in an American setting.
Still, that might not be enough to stop Donald Trump from dealing with Tim Cook and other movers and shakers of the tech industry with the hope of bringing manufacturing jobs back to America. Re/Code reminded readers that this was a key theme of the Trump campaign in the run-up to this month’s election, adding that Apple “seems quite serious” about maintaining the status quo, which is to keep hiring American workers in engineering, tech support, and other roles while keeping most manufacturing tasks outside of the U.S.
[Featured Image by Jeff J. Mitchell/Getty Images]