Hidden camera footage shows the exhausted workers in an iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus factory

Hidden camera footage shows the exhausted workers in an iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus factory
So, Apple's iPhone 6 and 6 Plus have been a smashing success, as Apple is just now able to drop the lead times on orders to 1 day, and it seems that the overwhelming demand is slowly balancing out with the supply. While we do not have accurate numbers, it's been reported time and time again that millions and millions of units have been sold, and that Apple's suppliers are having a hard time keeping up.

Unfortunately, the suppliers' workers seem to be taking some of the heaviest hits from the high demand. Back in September, New York-based China Labor Watch investigated a factory, owned by Catcher Technology, a company mainly tasked with making the bodies for iPads and Macbooks, and found 22 labor violations. Now, BBC sent their own undercover workers in a factory, owned by Taiwan-based Pegatron – one of the main suppliers for the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus – and things are not looking pretty.

A couple of years ago, Apple promised to keep a strict eye on how workers in its supply chain are treated, however, BBC's investigator saw breaches not only of Apple's guidelines, but of China's labor laws as soon as he set foot in the factory. His ID was taken, with no word on when (if) he is getting it back; the safety and health exam, which each worker needs to pass in order to be deemed capable of working in the facility, was taken verbally, by the full group of new employees, which makes the exam next to useless; when it comes to filling out the form, where workers have to give their consent to night shifts, they are explicitly told to mark “Yes”, or leave. The reporter said that the work shifts inside the factory often exceeded the 12-hour mark, and there was no overtime pay, nor days off – he reports to have worked 18 days straight, with no rest, despite him having demanded one. The footage shows a lot of workers, grabbing a nap on their workplace – sometimes, entire lines have not a single person awake on them.

Apple's response is that “napping in breaks is not unusual”, and both it and Pegatron have said to be looking into the BBC's claims, with Cupertinians adding that they constantly work with suppliers to make sure there is no excessive overtime for the workers, and that no other company is doing as much as them, in the field of fair and safe working conditions.



via: TheGuardian

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74 Comments

1. Sid91 unregistered

Sad to see such harsh work conditions, but isn't this the suppliers fault that they are not changing shifts for eg. in our firm after like 8hrs one batch of worker stop working and the night shift worker take their place and viceversa.

8. Ishtiaque99

Posts: 68; Member since: Apr 15, 2014

Suppliers are making more money at the cost pressurizing the workers.

13. joey_sfb

Posts: 6794; Member since: Mar 29, 2012

And Apple is the richest company in the world. Apple CEO can stand up and fight for their better working condition. Make a better deal! Its will benefit everyone in the long run and the world will learn to respect him as a caring human being.

16. Finalflash

Posts: 4063; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

Too bad his main purpose is to make money for the shareholders at all costs. Tim Cook is a numbers man, and that is all his aims are. Jobs may have been a visionary, and that was his push, to make the best products ever. Cook is about big numbers and that is all.

73. sgtdisturbed47

Posts: 969; Member since: Feb 02, 2012

Let's look at the numbers then. If Apple built a plant in the U.S. to employ 300,000 people to build iPhones, at a rate of $12/hour and mandatory overtime, 50 hours per week, then the company is paying out $10.62 Billion each year just in wages, to assemble the iPhones. Now that's unrealistic. If we brought that kind of manufacturing here, with the amount of money people will want to be paid here, then people would end up paying at least $200 more for the iPhone in order for Apple to make up that difference in cost. Customers wouldn't buy them as often, and that means reduced sales. Of course Tim Cook looks at the numbers, and it'll be a cold day in Hades before he allows that kind of cost for labor. Of course, this is only looking at a 300,000 employee plant.

22. Bertelgeus

Posts: 126; Member since: Oct 15, 2014

Pure nonsense. Should Tim Cook or Jony Ive pay $30 for a Big Mac because they are rich?

28. WakaFlakaD

Posts: 576; Member since: Apr 30, 2011

Fact: Not even Apple can control what the Chinese are running in China. China is just another world.

32. djcody

Posts: 228; Member since: Apr 17, 2013

They can move to different source, they just don't care about that. Profit is all they care!!!

42. elitewolverine

Posts: 5192; Member since: Oct 28, 2013

Yes because other companies are clearly paying more, all those China OEM's have the SAME conditions.

58. engineer-1701d unregistered

it's really quite easy for Apple to control this all they have to do is hire staff send them over to China have been stay there and have them daily watch what's going on and report and see if its not fixed they will seek other companies to substitute for Pegatronthe amount of money to have a group of say 25 people do this is nothing in comparison to watch Apple makes on a daily basis one day of income would be equal to 2 years of those people staying there

68. asrr62

Posts: 56; Member since: Sep 14, 2011

iDiot.

71. medicci37

Posts: 1361; Member since: Nov 19, 2011

Bs also it's possible to make a smartphone elsewhere

72. laughmi

Posts: 283; Member since: Oct 28, 2014

Tim Cook and caring?? My butt..

2. mobi_user

Posts: 152; Member since: Jun 18, 2013

Why do chinese people allowing Apple into their country. Why don't they ban this company altogether.

9. tedkord

Posts: 17409; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

Money. People need jobs.

12. Jamoga

Posts: 187; Member since: Dec 17, 2014

youre one of them worst haters! Good some people dont think like that.. if not, we all are doomed.

31. Salazzi

Posts: 537; Member since: Feb 17, 2014

You foolishly act as if Apple is the only company whose suppliers do this. Your Samdung is the same.

33. Pattyface

Posts: 1658; Member since: Aug 20, 2014

Yes it's apples fault that China allows this kind of work environment.. Why we are at it let's blame Samsung for supplying chips that aid in production.

3. vincelongman

Posts: 5720; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

Not surprised This is probably the case in all of these factories since almost all the OEMs are too money hungry

4. meanestgenius

Posts: 22213; Member since: May 28, 2014

"....with Cupertinians adding that they constantly work with suppliers to make sure there is no excessive overtime for the workers, and that no other company is doing as much as them, in the field of fair and safe working conditions." After viewing this footage, I think the folks over at Cupertino need to seriously consider revising this statement.

43. elitewolverine

Posts: 5192; Member since: Oct 28, 2013

They are not the only ones...

47. meanestgenius

Posts: 22213; Member since: May 28, 2014

Never said that they were.

62. elitewolverine

Posts: 5192; Member since: Oct 28, 2013

The problem lays in the fact that there is no one to replace the factory they are using. What USA or EU factory can pump them out?

64. wyrishman

Posts: 39; Member since: May 11, 2014

They should open one in the States. Take Detroit: those mothers pumped out cars like crazy in their prime...of course...that went downhill quickly. So it might behoove them to look into somewhere like Denver. There is a ton of open country around Denver to setup a factory and have decent working conditions with plenty of production. Then, of course, they would have to pay a reasonable wage which cuts into Apple's overflowing bank about and that's never gonna happen. Oh well, glad the footage is out. Your move Apple!

5. Loubielou

Posts: 603; Member since: Jul 11, 2012

Apple will not be really shown up how they treat there employees,and Why?are there phone to Expensive?when the Workers are just on £1 per hour,They are just Laughing at the Chinese workers and Mr Tim Cook will really get some Questions ask now,why?do they Charge so much for the iPhones,so Glad i realised that Apple were Just Ripping people Off and never Locked to the iTunes,another Apple Rip Off

6. android_hitman unregistered

just keep buying those apple products! keep the production ongoing.. This one of the reasons why I don't buy Apple products. Also my statement is probably stupid, just because we saw this BBC report doesn't mean that employees working for Samsung, Sony, etc have better work conditions..

10. tedkord

Posts: 17409; Member since: Jun 17, 2009

Any major company that is outsourcing production to Chinese firms is supporting this. Chinese labor is cheap, and this is one reason why.

23. Bertelgeus

Posts: 126; Member since: Oct 15, 2014

27. iampayne

Posts: 322; Member since: Aug 12, 2013

So do you buy any products, because Im sure this is happening with every company that is doing business over seas. You're a hypocrite if you buy anything but American honestly, or anything from a company whose manufacturing force isn't allowed to unionize.

7. TruthSpeaker unregistered

".... sometimes, entire lines have not a single person awake on them." Just to be clear. The only line shown in the documentary, where all the employees were asleep, was (what was referred to as) the "quality control line". They were ALL asleep, so I guess it's a popular place to have a doze

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