Quote from NY Times story, “Apple, America and a Squeezed Middle Class”:
“It is hard to estimate how much more it would cost to build iPhones in the United States. However, various academics and manufacturing analysts estimate that because labor is such a small part of technology manufacturing, paying American wages would add up to $65 to each iPhone’s expense. Since Apple’s profits are often hundreds of dollars per phone, building domestically, in theory, would still give the company a healthy reward. But such calculations are, in many respects, meaningless because building the iPhone in the United States would demand much more than hiring Americans — it would require transforming the national and global economies. Apple executives believe there simply aren’t enough American workers with the skills the company needs or factories with sufficient speed and flexibility. Other companies that work with Apple, like Corning, also say they must go abroad.”
Wait, so how is this any different from what they do in the U.S. and the rest of the world? Apple dropped the whole “rebellion image” thing over a decade ago.
Foreign Policy: Apple’s image in China now emphasizes not rebellion, but luxury — or as Wolf puts it, “exclusivity.” Its gorgeous glass-walled stores are located next to high-end clothing boutiques like Armani, Versace, and BMW Lifestyle. Apple is seen as the choice of “top white-collar professionals,” as stylish 30-something Lily Ou told me, glancing up from a row of brightly colored iPhone cases at Beijing’s Sanlitun Apple Store. Ou is a sales manager for an international food distributor. “I like to show off my Apple identity,” she said.