Apple partner Foxconn continues to diversify, now bidding for Taiwan 4G spectrum

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
Foxconn is continuing to diversify its offerings beyond the iPhone and other Apple products, as the company has now submitted an application for a 4G high-speed mobile spectrum license.

Foxconn Watch
Foxconn's smart watch, paired with an iPhone. Source: Want China Times


The bid by Foxconn ? also known as Hon Hai Precision Ltd. ? will put the company in the running with six other applicants, according to The Wall Street Journal. Taiwan's National Communications Commission will review the list of bidders in August before auctioning off 4G spectrum in September.

For Foxconn, the move is the latest in the company's ongoing push to lessen its reliance on Apple and diversify its offerings beyond contract electronics manufacturing. Foxconn assembles the majority of Apple's products, and that partnership has proved quite lucrative for the Taiwanese company, boosting its profits to $3.2 billion last year.

The high-end smartphone segment Apple's iPhone relies on, though, is generally thought to be maturing, and profits in the sector could plateau or even slip as high-end devices achieve a level of saturation.

To protect itself against this trend, Foxconn has begun developing and marketing its own branded devices. Most recently, such efforts took the form of an iPhone-compatible smart watch, one that measures a wearer's respiration and heartbeat and can check phone calls and Facebook posts.

In addition to the smart watch, Foxconn has also edged closer to producing its own mobile devices, a move that could tie in to the 4G spectrum bid. The iPhone builder in May announced a collaboration with Mozilla on a range of devices that would run that company's Firefox OS. Foxconn did not specify when such devices might materialize or in what form, but the company is thought to be working on both a tablet and a smartphone that will run Mozilla's HTML5-based operating system.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 14
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 10,017member
    "To protect itself against this trend, Foxconn has begun developing and marketing its own branded devices."

    Read that to mean... "We have all of Apple's blueprints and production techniques and can easily build a knock-off phone that we can sell cheap because we don't have any R&D costs to factor in. Ha, ha, ha!"

  • Reply 2 of 14
    geekdadgeekdad Posts: 1,131member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post

    "To protect itself against this trend, Foxconn has begun developing and marketing its own branded devices."



    Read that to mean... "We have all of Apple's blueprints and production techniques and can easily build a knock-off phone that we can sell cheap because we don't have any R&D costs to factor in. Ha, ha, ha!"



     

    I agree...but how does Apple prevent this?
  • Reply 3 of 14
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 10,017member
    geekdad wrote: »
    I agree...but how does Apple prevent this?

    The only real way is build in house but that isn't going to happen. Therefore Apple will remain the R&D for these Asian factories who will continue to rip them off.
  • Reply 4 of 14
    geekdadgeekdad Posts: 1,131member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post



    The only real way is build in house but that isn't going to happen. Therefore Apple will remain the R&D for these Asian factories who will continue to rip them off.

     

    I know.... another supplier turned competitor....
  • Reply 5 of 14
    mknoppmknopp Posts: 257member
    Apple needs to immediately start moving production away from them. It is too late to stop all of the damage, but they waited too long with Samsung. I hope they learned their lesson. Perhaps this is a good time to use some of that overseas money and start doing some of their own manufacturing by setting up production facilities overseas. Preferably outside of the increasingly risky to do business China.
  • Reply 6 of 14


    Foxonn if it was that easy, every huts in China and India had one Steve Jobs! No matter what you do, you are doomed before you even started!!! Remember this lol

     

  • Reply 7 of 14
    jollypauljollypaul Posts: 328member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post





    Apple will remain the R&D for these Asian factories who will continue to rip them off.


     


    Not just R&D, but source of infrastructure funding. How many of these investments in the factories of partners (soon to be competitors) have we heard about recently? How many times must Apple get burned before deciding to diversify themselves?

  • Reply 8 of 14


    Hope Foxconn is beafing up their legal team, they are going to need them soon enough,

  • Reply 9 of 14
    asciiascii Posts: 5,936member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post





    The only real way is build in house but that isn't going to happen. Therefore Apple will remain the R&D for these Asian factories who will continue to rip them off.


    Until the day when you can download the blueprint for the iPhone 7S from iTunes, and print it on your 3D printer at home.

  • Reply 10 of 14
    lukefrenchlukefrench Posts: 102member


    Hmm, subcontractors expanding in their own brand is normal expansion once you are big enough. All the asians PC makers were once subcontractors. but that is a difficult step and few succeed.


     


    There is no evidence right now of anything foul, and if foxconn got an execution expertise thanks to Apple, that is only in the final assembly area and they need to step up their engeneering chops. Going to a  watch was actually smart as the risks are more limited. Going to a firefox os phone is much more risky in investements terms, even if we can suppose mozilla share the costs.


     


    As long they dont compete directly, not much a problem I think, and foxconn obviously is aiming the lower tier. Look at how Lenovo and IBM collaborated harmoniously for years when lenovo was both a subcontractor and a competitor. IBM even finally sold its mobile division to Lenovo.


    The smamsung case is much more a problem because both companies are in the same segment of market. 

  • Reply 11 of 14


    ...

  • Reply 12 of 14
    matrix07matrix07 Posts: 1,993member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by lukefrench View Post


    There is no evidence right now of anything foul, and if foxconn got an execution expertise thanks to Apple, that is only in the final assembly area and they need to step up their engeneering chops. Going to a  watch was actually smart as the risks are more limited. Going to a firefox os phone is much more risky in investements terms, even if we can suppose mozilla share the costs.



    They deserve credit a bit. It's almost like they literally try to avoid Android, isn't it?


  • Reply 13 of 14
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,526member
    lukefrench wrote: »
    Hmm, subcontractors expanding in their own brand is normal expansion once you are big enough. All the asians PC makers were once subcontractors. but that is a difficult step and few succeed.

    There is no evidence right now of anything foul, and if foxconn got an execution expertise thanks to Apple, that is only in the final assembly area and they need to step up their engeneering chops. Going to a  watch was actually smart as the risks are more limited. Going to a firefox os phone is much more risky in investements terms, even if we can suppose mozilla share the costs.

    As long they dont compete directly, not much a problem I think, and foxconn obviously is aiming the lower tier. Look at how Lenovo and IBM collaborated harmoniously for years when lenovo was both a subcontractor and a competitor. IBM even finally sold its mobile division to Lenovo.
    The smamsung case is much more a problem because both companies are in the same segment of market. 

    Thanks for a realistic comment at last.
  • Reply 14 of 14
    Foxconn is the second largest shareholder of the consumer electronic brand Vizio. My guess is over the next few years Vizio is going to get a huge product and advertising push to equal Samsuck. http://store.vizio.com/3d-smart-tvs.html
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