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Reporter allegedly goes undercover to work at Foxconn, assembling Apple iPhone

Posted: , by Alan F.

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Reporter allegedly goes undercover to work at Foxconn, assembling Apple iPhone
"By my own calculations, I have to mark five iPhone plates every minute, at least. For every 10 hours, I have to accomplish 3,000 iPhone 5 back plates. There are total 4 production lines in charge of this process, 12 workers in every line. Each line can produce 36,000 iPhone 5 back plates in half a day, this is scary … I finally stopped working at 7 a.m. We were asked to gather again after work. The supervisor shout out loud in front of us: “Who wants to rest early at 5 a.m !? We are all here to earn money ! Let’s work harder !” I was thinking who on earth wants to work two extra hours overtime for only mere 27 yuan (USD$4) !?"-Reporter undercover in Foxconn factory
A reporter for the Shanghai Evening Post allegedly went undercover at a Foxconn plant to report on the poor working conditions at the factories that assemble the Apple iPhone. Pretending to be interested in factory work, the journalist got inside of Foxconn's Tai Yuan factory for ten days, seven of them spent in orientation.

The reporter said sleeping conditions at Foxconn's dorms were a "nightmare" citing dirty living conditions, barnyard smells and an infestation of cockroaches. Trash was piled up in front of dorm rooms. Workers entering and exiting the factory floor pass through metal detectors to prevent stealing. Anyone caught with something they shouldn't have is immediately fired.

On the assembly line, the reporter's job entailed marking areas of the Apple iPhone's back cover where masking tape would be applied before painting. The reporter was reprimanded by a supervisor for marking too much of the back with the marker. Another worker was chewed out for going too slowly. "This is the new unleashed iPhone 5 back plate, you should be honored having the chance to produce it," said the supervisor to the sluggish worker.

There is two sides to each story. Considering that none of the undercover reporter's stories have been verified, we suggest that you keep an open mind about this subject.

source: ShanghaiEveningPost via MICGadget, AppleInsider




35 Comments
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posted on 12 Sep 2012, 04:47 23

1. hariprasath.j (Posts: 27; Member since: 27 Mar 2012)


looks like rotten Apple

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 05:01 22

7. aaronkatrini (Posts: 236; Member since: 06 Jun 2012)


Hey its not Apple fault! They made an agreement with Foxconn just to produce the iPhones. All fault goes to Foxconn and the Government of Chine for the miserable conditions of the work place.
And one more thing : Sammy and Htc and LG and every other OEM are producing way more phones and other stuff than Apple. Just Samsung itself selling more than 10 million SGS3's MAY have taken their workers to the same conditions! Open your Eyes! Why dont they check Samsung and LG too? I'm pretty sure they'll find smth! Dont you think.
And yes to everybody who will thumb me down, for saying only the truth, You wont change the living conditions of poor chinese working there. You'll just be an Androidfanboy who only hates Apple for anything, even when is not their fault...Thank you

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 05:23 3

14. sam_tek (Posts: 84; Member since: 18 Feb 2011)


you got a point! and surprisingly.. no thumbs down so far! :)

I am an android fan more so than apple. You could even say I dislike apple products (at least the ones in the mobile space). But I wouldn't want anyone to label me or any other android fan as someone who thumbs people down baselessly (sic).

To the point, yes, it's foxconn, not apple. And, there's a decent chance that LG or samsung is sailing in the same boat! Sad!

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 06:01

17. Dejan (Posts: 17; Member since: 24 Mar 2012)


Yeah you are probably right and you are totally right about LG and Samsung and everyone else,and i am android user.But if we look the rational way...don't you think that Apple do this because of profit?Dont get me wrong,i am just saying they made deal with foxconn because it was profitable for them and the way foxconn threats his workers...welll lets say that Apple just dong give a f**k about that.Cheers :)

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 07:10 1

21. networkdood (Posts: 6244; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)


Yeag, Foxconn is just doing what any good ole Chinese company does - this is why American companies love China....

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 07:18 2

23. infinitemethod (Posts: 123; Member since: 04 Sep 2012)


You're still wrong. Apple doesn't have to make all their products overseas, they could do it in America, Canada, Mexico, or here's an idea! The U S of A. But no, instead all Apple really cares about is their bottom line and making a lot of money by using cheap labor and jacking up the prices at the same time. Samsung. LG are Asian companies. I hate that they use cheap labor as well, but when its all said and done, they aren't American companies.

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 07:47 1

25. WakaFlakaD (Posts: 359; Member since: 30 Apr 2011)


Okay... which company can you think of that do NOT wish to make more money??

Jacking up the prices... well this is up to a consumer's choice. Not everyone are force to pay for their premium? If you simply don't like it or don't agree with their price , you don't need to bother on how much offer to people that wants it.

Poor Asian countries have cheaper labor, and that's just the reality of this world. Yes products can be made in the USA or Canada, but comparing minimum wages between countries, of course companies will choose the lower one, and that's a no-brainer.

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 08:35 4

30. infinitemethod (Posts: 123; Member since: 04 Sep 2012)


My point is, Apple is the scum of the Earth. Everyone that supports them should be ashamed of themselves.

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 09:46 4

33. medicci37 (Posts: 586; Member since: 19 Nov 2011)


@ infinitemethod EXACTLY !!!

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 08:23 1

27. MikeG77 (Posts: 366; Member since: 24 Nov 2008)


You are correct that Apple does NOT have to make products overseas BUT they do for a host reasons.

1. Cheap Labor
2. Easy access to rare earth metals
3. No unions!
4. Less environmental regulations
5. Production capacity

Obviously people don't care about Apple and Foxconn's business practices because people keep buying Apple products. Now your saying that Apple should build items in the USA?......good luck seeing as you would probably have a 25% price increase on products "made in America".. That means less net profit for a company. Not to mention having to deal with all the things i mentioned above. Shareholders don't like that kind of thing and neither do analysts

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 10:25 1

34. MorePhonesThanNeeded (Posts: 618; Member since: 23 Oct 2011)


25% price increase? You do know that any Apple device is made for far less than it is sold for correct? while it comes to about $120 in parts, why on earth does it retail for $650+ off contract? Apple is it's own vendor, so there is no bloody middle man. All multinational American owned businesses build outside of the States because it's cheaper, it works best for their bottom lines as the US workforce doesn't take lightly to crap wages and crappy working conditions, law and unions are there to see that work is fairly run. 'Tis life yes, but when everywhere gets laws and protection for wages, then what will these companies do other than bite the bullet.

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 18:25

35. MikeG77 (Posts: 366; Member since: 24 Nov 2008)


Yes MPTN i am fully aware that the phone is sold for more then what it actually costs. I assume that you know that the Apple has other costs related to there products which is built into the price. Now the 25% figure is a shot in the dark but once you get a union involved the price of goods will increase because of all the benefits and differance in pay the American workers would get. Would i like to see it built in the US...yes but its not gonna happen.

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 08:33 1

29. weinerslav (Posts: 126; Member since: 31 Jul 2012)


Yes it's apple fault, they are very well aware about slavery in the foxconn factories, everybody is! Top of the line samsung and lg phones are made in korea (some sony in japan and some nokia in finland), check the back of your phone, I never buy chinese built phones, if no one does nothing it's up to the consumer to fight it, it is also our responsability!

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 09:39 2

31. medicci37 (Posts: 586; Member since: 19 Nov 2011)


ASSuming that everyone who is against Apples production methods is a Android fanboy is just plain Stupid. & If you would take the time to learn the facts, you would understand that Apple can change how foxconn treats their employees. Also, Samsung actually invested Billions of dollars to manufacture Some of their best chips in the U.S. (Something Apple won't do. Because they will not let human rights stand in the way of another year of record profits) & Their overseas factories do treat their employees much better than Apple.

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 04:47 4

2. No_Nonsense (Posts: 826; Member since: 17 Aug 2012)


Wonder if the guy would be alive after all this had made an appearance on tech blogs.

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 04:51 11

3. gunnroses (Posts: 20; Member since: 12 Sep 2012)


come on, Apple you are showing to the world how greedy your company is. This is not supposed to be the case for multi-billion company

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 04:52 12

4. Sniggly (Posts: 6695; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


If this is true it's sickening.

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 05:03 6

8. wendygarett (unregistered)


You mean pic#6?? Lol

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 04:52 3

5. eisenbricher (Posts: 970; Member since: 09 Aug 2012)


I'm not sure whom to blame on this..
Is apple paying the Foxconn really less money,
or the real culprits are the Top Officials at Foxconn who are being too greedy?
Or is it the usual way of a mass producing chinese hardware factory??
Any thoughts people?

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 04:59 4

6. TheMaster (Posts: 4; Member since: 21 Nov 2011)


I bet that they tell them the same story every year: "This is the new unleashed iPhone (insert number here) back plate, you should be honored having the chance to produce it,".

Here's a better idea for apple , instead "designed in california, made in China" , they could get the department of corrections to do the same and have it say " designed in california, made in USA.

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 05:05 3

9. RGreen (Posts: 48; Member since: 06 Jul 2012)


Does the workers live there? "cocokroaches, laundry, and sleeping quarters"
Hay these people would love U.S. prison system !!! Pick any jail/prison in the U.S.

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 05:07 1

10. microsoftnokiawin (Posts: 879; Member since: 30 Mar 2012)


whatever happened to humanity no surprise a lot of people immigrate from china

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 05:09 7

11. whysoserious (Posts: 316; Member since: 20 Jul 2012)


If I was there and my supervisor chews me like that, i'd stamp the Apple marker on his forehead and shove down the back plate on his throat.

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 05:10 1

12. kombinatonz (Posts: 25; Member since: 28 Aug 2012)


I believe this trues because its another american company in asia trying to do things cheap. Apple is no different from walmart and disney

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 05:12 3

13. Peter27 (Posts: 233; Member since: 13 Jul 2012)


I bet no Apple fan cares about this article.
Today is iPhone announcement day so they will just focus on that. All they care about is their phone anyway, and they would not change it for anything. Even if there were workers dying and not buying phone could save their lives.

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 05:26 1

15. Raptor9142 (Posts: 41; Member since: 15 Apr 2012)


SO this is the New iPhone u get from ppls who were forced to work, think wat its quality would be.. who would quality work after being forced..
Shame on u Foxcon and Apple

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 05:43

16. FoneAddict (Posts: 189; Member since: 05 Jul 2011)


Fruits of capitalism including Apples ...

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 06:04 3

18. lumialove (Posts: 75; Member since: 16 May 2012)


http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-19557497#
Read the link and all will know why apple is no longer an innovative company rather a company playing it safe to not mess with the profits.

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 06:25 2

19. FAUguy (Posts: 77; Member since: 09 Apr 2008)


Maybe it's just me, but I would be willing to pay more for a smartphone made in the US, with better quality parts, and that employees US workers with good conditions and pay.
Anyone else?

Just keep in mind the phones would cost more.....but how much more is open for debate.

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 06:49

20. Aeires (unregistered)


I'd be willing to pay the same price, prices are marked up too much right now. The iPhone has something like 100% markup.

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 07:13

22. networkdood (Posts: 6244; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)


Maybe when you compare the cost of making it to the 2 yr contract price, but when compared to the full MSRP....you are talking about 200+%

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 07:37 1

24. lyndon420 (Posts: 1684; Member since: 11 Jul 2012)


The sad thing is that out of all these OEM's, apple is an American company and the richest in the world. Apple knows the conditions there and still they don't do anything about it.

Just think...the person who made your iphone may have committed suicide right after making it. Hope you enjoy your new iphone.

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 08:15 1

26. rusticguy (Posts: 2813; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)


Basically it's a Prison where inmates get some money for working on something for some company situated elsewhere. Such stories have appeared earleir also way back and that was on M$ keyboards. Nothing new in this.

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 08:31 1

28. cheeseaddict (Posts: 49; Member since: 05 Sep 2012)


i'd rather be fired stealing than to work for those f*cking wh*res. they are the worst then, profits at first and employess at last. you all have place in hell bastards..

posted on 12 Sep 2012, 09:39

32. alan_1230 (Posts: 72; Member since: 22 Apr 2012)


the least thing Apple can do is make sure there is none of this is happening ! shame on you Apple

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