Rumor: Apple to bring Mac mini production to U.S. in 2013

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
Apple will reportedly move manufacture of its Mac mini desktop line to American facilities as part of the company's initiative to return device production to U.S. shores, with plants run by partner Foxconn starting recruitment for automated production lines sometime in 2013.

Mac mini


The sometimes reliable Taiwanese publication DigiTimes cited upstream supply chain sources as saying Apple will likely move Mac mini production to one of Foxconn's U.S. plants, though it is unclear if the electronics giant plans to build a new facility or retool an existing location. Foxconn reportedly has "about 15 operating bases" in the U.S.

The rumored move has been foreshadowed by comments made by Apple CEO Tim Cook, who earlier this month said the company will invest over $100 million to produce one line of Macs in the U.S. by 2013. In a separate interview at the "All Things D" conference in May, Cook said that he wanted to see American-made Apple products, but offered no further information on whether that dream would become a reality.

Hopes for American-made Apple products were rekindled when a few new iMac units were labeled as being "Assembled in USA," hinting that the company may be testing domestic production facilities.

According to the publication, Mac mini shipments are expected to reach 1.4 million units by the end of 2012, and will be up 30 percent year-to-year with 1.8 million units in 2013.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 39


    Well, it makes sense that the speculation about the Mac Pro being produced in the US would be wrong, since Apple doesn't care about Mac Pros.

  • Reply 2 of 39


    You know, that sounds right. Not difficult or expensive manufacturing like the iDevices, not representative of a huge secrecy concern (like just about everything else), and it has probably become cheap enough to make here without changing any pricing anywhere.






    The sometimes reliable



     


    Whoever said AI doesn't have a sense of humor.

  • Reply 3 of 39
    Right. Just like Boeing manufactures the 787 in the US.

    Guessing this should impact the share price negatively.
  • Reply 4 of 39


    Originally Posted by eightzero View Post

    Guessing this should impact the share price negatively.


     


    Creating American jobs? That's another $20 off.


    Selling more iPhones than all previous quarters combined? That's another $20 off.


    Discovering a way to manufacture iMacs for only $1? That's another $20 off.

  • Reply 5 of 39
    ksecksec Posts: 1,545member
    Well I guess it makes sense when most of the Mac Mini are being sold to US anyway. From Server to Desktop. So it doesn't make sense to assembled in China and send the final product back to US. But then this ignores the potential market in EU and Asia.

    What financial benefits does it have when product are made in US?
  • Reply 6 of 39
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,946member
    Whoever said AI doesn't have a sense of humor.

    Exactly the same level of "sometimes reliable" as a broken analog clock.

    A competing site said "hit or miss", which is, "might occasionally hit the broad side of a barn if they copied someone else's firing solution and a bit of luck".
  • Reply 7 of 39


    Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

    A competing site said "hit or miss", which is, "might occasionally hit the broad side of a barn if they copied someone else's firing solution and a bit of luck".


     


    DigiTimes' dad, wanting it to feel a sense of accomplishment even though he knew it was incapable of performing the task at its age, nonchalantly moved the barn into the path of DigiTimes' shot.

  • Reply 9 of 39


    Originally Posted by iftekhar View Post

    just wondering why you guys are posting old news?!


     


    This is more specific than that. Well, as specific as a DigiTimes article can be said to be.

  • Reply 10 of 39
    winterwinter Posts: 1,238member
    Looking forward to having a Mac made in the US. Now all I need is for a TV or monitor to be made here and I'm set.
  • Reply 11 of 39
    ksec wrote: »
    Well I guess it makes sense when most of the Mac Mini are being sold to US anyway. From Server to Desktop. So it doesn't make sense to assembled in China and send the final product back to US. But then this ignores the potential market in EU and Asia.
    What financial benefits does it have when product are made in US?

    There are plenty of products made in other countries specifically for sale in other countries. On the simplest of cost analyst measures making a product in the US only makes sense if any increase in manufacturing/assembly is less than the cost for shipping to the US. That cost doesn't seem to be very high for a product like the Mac mini. I would expect something like the Mac Pro that is large and heavy to be assembled and packaged in the US before I'd consider the Mac mini.
  • Reply 12 of 39
    kdogg wrote: »
    Well, it makes sense that the speculation about the Mac Pro being produced in the US would be wrong, since Apple doesn't care about Mac Pros.

    That's exactly why it will be the Mac Pro, they don't care about having it made by inexperienced American welfare/prison labour. /s
  • Reply 13 of 39
    asciiascii Posts: 5,941member
    Starting recruitment for automated production lines?
  • Reply 14 of 39
    gtrgtr Posts: 3,231member


    The United States:


     


    The Land of the Big Mac


     


    ...and soon the Big Mini.

  • Reply 15 of 39
    lukeilukei Posts: 329member
    ascii wrote: »
    Starting recruitment for automated production lines?

    Even automated lines need people somewhere in the process. Loading components, moving boxes etc. Given the % of a Mac Mini that is human labour this makes total sense. Based on my experience of Chinese factories used by Apple I'd say that human element is less than US20 per unit.
  • Reply 16 of 39
    lukeilukei Posts: 329member
    ascii wrote: »
    Starting recruitment for automated production lines?

    Even automated lines need people somewhere in the process. Loading components, moving boxes etc. Given the % of a Mac Mini that is human labour this makes total sense. Based on my experience of Chinese factories used by Apple I'd say that human element is less than US20 per unit.
  • Reply 17 of 39
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 6,618member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by ksec View Post



    Well I guess it makes sense when most of the Mac Mini are being sold to US anyway. From Server to Desktop. So it doesn't make sense to assembled in China and send the final product back to US. But then this ignores the potential market in EU and Asia.

    What financial benefits does it have when product are made in US?


     


    You do realize that assembling in China and shipping back to the U.S. is still CHEAPER than making it here. Much cheaper.

  • Reply 18 of 39
    lkrupp wrote: »
    You do realize that assembling in China and shipping back to the U.S. is still CHEAPER than making it here. Much cheaper.
    Bulk shipping cost for the mini from China a US logistics center by air freight is about $16 by my estimate. If production in China is $10/unit, and half the units are sold in the US, the manufacturing premium for a product designed for economical assembly is likely cost-neutral. The key would be that the major chips and boards are also made locally.

    For the Pro, I would think centralized manufacture of the motherboard and distribution to final assembly plants would make sense, since air freight on the case is a significant premium.

    The iMac would be harder in my mind, unless the display was manufactured in the same location as the case and final assembly.
  • Reply 19 of 39

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post





    There are plenty of products made in other countries specifically for sale in other countries. On the simplest of cost analyst measures making a product in the US only makes sense if any increase in manufacturing/assembly is less than the cost for shipping to the US. That cost doesn't seem to be very high for a product like the Mac mini. I would expect something like the Mac Pro that is large and heavy to be assembled and packaged in the US before I'd consider the Mac mini.


    I, too, thought the Mac Pro was the best candidate for USA assembly because of the transportation charges.


     


    From a totally different angle and admitting I'm not a tax expert.... the USA has high corporate tax rates and the Mac mini is believed to be a low margin product.  Maybe the tax implications to Apple are better for USA production of the mini instead of a high margin model.

  • Reply 20 of 39
    asciiascii Posts: 5,941member


    Perhaps that is why the Mini lost it's GPU. They are trying to make it as simple as possible to build, for their new US-based automated factory.

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