Foxconn workers go on strike to protest working conditions while assembling the Apple iPhone 5

Foxconn workers go on strike to protest working conditions while assembling the Apple iPhone 5
After management at Foxconn enacted new, strict demands on the production of the Apple iPhone 5, thousands of Foxconn workers went on strike. This comes from a report by an independent workers' rights organization. The workers at the Foxconn plant in Zhengzhou, China started walking off the job at 1pm local time on Friday (1am EDT). Most of the workers involved deal with on-site quality control for the Apple iPhone 5. The strike continued to affect production well into Friday evening as the job action paralyzed the assembly lines at the plant.

Under the new guidelines, workers now have stricter standards that might seem nearly impossible to achieve. Those working on the Apple iPhone 5 must be precise within two-hundredths of a millimeter. According to the China Labor Watch (CLW), workers could not turn out phones that precise because of design defects with the latest version of Apple's iconic smartphone. The combination of the new standards along with Foxconn's refusal to allow workers to take vacation time during a week long holiday, led to clashes between inspectors and workers. Some of the injured required hospitalization.

190,000 people are employed at  Foxconn's Zhenghou complex which was visited this past March by Apple CEO Tim Cook. CLW director Li Qiang spoke to his sources at Foxconn to confirm the strike, which was still going on at 11pm local time Friday evening (11am EDT). Foxconn's assembly lines do run 24 hours a day and it is unclear if workers from other shifts are taking part in the job action.

In late September, Foxconn had to close a factory in China for one day after a brawl broke out among 2,000 employees with 40 getting hurt. The plant reopened the next day.

source: CNN

Related phones

iPhone 5
  • Display 4.0" 640 x 1136 pixels
  • Camera 8 MP / 1.2 MP front
  • Processor Apple A6, Dual-core, 1300 MHz
  • Storage 64 GB
  • Battery 1440 mAh(8h 3G talk time)



1. whysoserious

Posts: 318; Member since: Jul 20, 2012

One of the thousand reasons why Apple is so pathetic.

5. eisenbricher

Posts: 973; Member since: Aug 09, 2012

Apple undoubtedly has the power of influencing foxconn. Can't they donate just a few $$'s from the hundreds of $ they gain per phone? A simple step would magically solve everything.

13. MeoCao unregistered

In this case you should ask why they make iPhone in China and not US, their home country?

16. rsxl5

Posts: 65; Member since: Sep 05, 2012

Cost and speed. Employing an army of 200k people in US or Canada (or let's say 50k if they manufacture slower) would made each phone much more expensive. Not mentioning the fact that they would need to build factory/SMT/DIP/assembly lines/rework startions/WH/logistic centers/etc. Each part manufactured in US/Canada would have better tolerance and quality but the price would be affected heavily.

25. android_hitman unregistered

not the price ... apple profit would be hurt... and we know who loves $$

29. darkkjedii

Posts: 31285; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Well said bro. Well said, u r obviously some one who has knowledge and not jus an apple hating big mouth. Apple is no different than Samsung moto Htc or any other mass production company. As u can see ur comment got a thumb down, that's cuz most android users just wanna hate on apple so they single them out as the poster boy. One most realize that to have a poster boy for something, there must b more than one doing the thing hats gets u posterized. Ur comment gets a thumb up from me.

56. jmoita2

Posts: 930; Member since: Dec 23, 2011

If our "government" wasn't already bought and paid for by corporate interests, this problem would be easily solved. Simply pass a 99% taxation of all electronics made outside the US, as well as CEO salaries in excess of 1 million dollars. Magically, manufacturing would return to the US. But I'm being polianish, I know.

27. darkkjedii

Posts: 31285; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

U could ask that of 1000's of companies. Samsung and Htc and Motorola r also partners of Foxconn, not just apple. There's a ton of reasons US companies outsource, most have to do with huge assembly lines, and cheap labor. I don't like some of apples business tactics, but really how different r they from most other companies? U just don't like apple so u single them out, don't b fake about it.

31. Doakie

Posts: 2478; Member since: May 06, 2009

These other companies you've named haven't had frequent stories about their assembly lines. Worker mass suicides, anti suicide contracts forced upon their employees, etc. Quit trying to make up some moral equivalency bulls***. If we heard an equivalent amount of stories on Motorola's assembly lines, or HTC's assembly lines I'd label you something other than an Apple Apologist. But in the mean time "Apple is reaping a mind-blowing 93% margin on iPhone 5 memory." Read the story on Phone Arena. Just because all phone companies hire subcontractors to make phones does not make all manufacturers demands equivalent. Especially when a company is so hugely profitable that they don't need to demand such work from their employees to stay in the black. If an ailing manufacturer hired a sub and said "We need these phones to be churned out in X time or our company will not turn a profit..." I can see asking your workers to work through a holiday because if they don't there will be no work for them later on because the company will fail. However if you're the most profitable company in the world you have room in your profit margins to be selective about your subcontractors and find one that treats their employees fairly to not kill you in the media over mistreatment violations, or at least negotiate a contract with them that they get paid enough to treat their employees fairly. If you want Quality AND Speed you have to pay a premium. You cant have Quality, Speed, and pay nothing at the same time. Your whole mentality about rationalizing why it's okay is just plain nieve, I hate sounding like a hippy because I hate hippies. But at this point I need to sound like a grown up. I understand that I won't get through to you, because your eyes are closed to the Chinese workers plight. But at least maybe I can turn around some brainwashing you might trick the other Phone Arena kids into thinking.

43. darkkjedii

Posts: 31285; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

I don't care what profit apple makes, cuz I don't work for them. Also my eyes aren't closed to the plight of anyone, I you're concerned about the plight Chinese workers then b concerned about the plight of people who suffer all around the world. Like I am

41. galokjai

Posts: 36; Member since: Jul 20, 2011

the answer is very simple and obvious...Apple, the people who work for them, and the people who buy their products are greedy people who only care about themselves and don't care about anyone else in the world.

45. darkkjedii

Posts: 31285; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

It's incredible that u can sit at home on the couch, and know the minds and motives of millions of people. From now on I pledge my self to your teachings. What a joke.

22. Mxyzptlk unregistered

Apple or the comment?

35. whysoserious

Posts: 318; Member since: Jul 20, 2012

Yes, your comment.

55. quakan

Posts: 1418; Member since: Mar 02, 2011

Apple isn't Foxconn's only customer...

2. Topcat488

Posts: 1416; Member since: Sep 29, 2012

Not only should Apple be ashamed, but the millions of people that support Apple, or any other business, that subjects their workers to this kind of slavery. It's time that Apple bring back those jobs to the United States. Apple has profited enough from these Chinese people. Again I say to the consumers of Apple products, shame, shame, shame on you... Just my opinion.


Posts: 316; Member since: Jul 15, 2009

Apple can ask for anything they paying for, the real problem here is the Chinese Goverment that allow this to happen

34. Doakie

Posts: 2478; Member since: May 06, 2009

That's essentially saying "Don't hate the player hate the game." Grow up, without the players the game wouldn't exist. Just because in some countries there aren't laws against theft doesn't mean we as humans don't know that stealing from each other is wrong. Reality is, there are some people out there who don't have empathy and don't care about using other people to make money. Apple is run by a bunch of those people. In the words of Lewis Black "Piggy piggy piggy, fu** piggy piggy."

24. Mxyzptlk unregistered

Not my problem. Unless the US changes its ways I don't see that happening. Btw Samsung was also found guilty of unfair labor practices in their own factories.

28. someones4

Posts: 628; Member since: Sep 16, 2012

At least samsung tried to rectify it and there are no brawls or any sort of unruly behaviour involved. Apple can't even keep its workforce happy.

30. darkkjedii

Posts: 31285; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Exactly and notice how u got thumbed down for that comment. Some android users r simply the animal word they use to describe iOS users. The minute u make a valid point that's not anti apple u get a thumb down, yet they claim they like freedom and choice. Yeah if that choice is android.

37. Doakie

Posts: 2478; Member since: May 06, 2009

Quit trying to dismiss other people's opinions(thumbs) on your narrow minded comments. Have you ever considered they thumbs downed your comment because they disagree with your statement and that its not only about Android fanaticism? And no you're free to make a choice that's any company who isn't the most greedy company out there, buy Windows Phone, BlackBerry, Bada/Tizen, webOS, Symbian, Meego, Sailfish, Firefox Mobile, whatever. Just don't buy Apple. Looking over my comment you're right, I'm very anti-Apple. I'm anti-human mistreatment. So sue me, just like your beloved company is good at. By the way his point that Samsung does it too wasn't that valid, that's why it got thumbs down. That's the Red herring fallacy: Tu quoque ("you too", appeal to hypocrisy) – the argument states that a certain position is false or wrong and/or should be disregarded because its proponent fails to act consistently in accordance with that position. Samsung haven't had mass suicides, they haven't had anti-suicide contracts for employees to sign. There obviously is something wrong at the Foxconn/Apple plant. Look beyond rationalizing and defending your buying habits and see human mistreatment.

44. darkkjedii

Posts: 31285; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

I can car less who thumbs down my comment and my comments r not narrow minded if u bother to actually read into them you'd notice that that r actually neutral and yes Samsung does it too, and so does Chevy Pepsi Sarah lee Sony Nike, and most other companies.

49. someones4

Posts: 628; Member since: Sep 16, 2012

of course ever multinational corporation does it. the point is that almost non of them have this sort of racket even if they mistreat their employees. This doesn't mean that i side with them. It just shows how terrible the management is at apple and foxconn and how much worse apple is when compared to other corporations

47. EclipseGSX

Posts: 1777; Member since: Oct 18, 2011

Well said, too bad darkkjedii is a simpleton who cant even spell out "you" or "are" He is very narrow minded indeed and in denial his precious fruit company is one of the most greedy corporations on the planet. I think their profit margin speaks for itself. So they make all this f**king money, so what? Does it benefit mankind in anyway? No! So wake the f**k up and look at the big picture here. HUMANS ARE BEING MISTREATED TO FILL UP THE POCKETS OF APPLE BIGWIGS

40. galokjai

Posts: 36; Member since: Jul 20, 2011

the reason products these days are made in China is because Apple started doing this first.

3. GeekMovement unregistered

And they always argue that many other companies assemble their products at Foxconn, but yet all the problems happen when it's assembling Apple products... weak. Apple down the drain.

4. eisenbricher

Posts: 973; Member since: Aug 09, 2012

How many times, huh? That damn foxconn should better start respecting people. What do they think the workers are, Animals? Even animals are pampered well in other countries. This incident once again reveals how this all 'Profit Margin' is ruining poor workers' life.

9. PowTheBowl

Posts: 86; Member since: Apr 19, 2012

It's not Foxconn's fault, it's Apple's.

20. eisenbricher

Posts: 973; Member since: Aug 09, 2012

My friend works in Foxconn, in one of the IP5 plants. He's at higher position than the workers and earns pretty hefty sum. Only the workers don't.

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit for samples and additional information.