Quick. Where is your McDonald’s hamburger made? Down the street, right? How about your Toyota or Honda? Most are made in the U.S.A. Most. As in, mostly. Despite America First, all the car’s parts are not made in the U.S. What about iPhone? China, right? It depends on who you ask.
Parts Is Parts
Generally speaking, when we say something is made somewhere, we tend to mean manufactured or even assembled. Most of us are certain that many of a product’s parts come from other countries. Walmart certainly is not a bastion of Made in America products. Many customers prefer cheap, and cheap isn’t the Made in America way.
Where is iPhone made? If you answered, China, you’re correct. At least, correct in the general sense of the term made. Some iPhones are made in other countries, thanks to the face of nationalism. For more than a few years, the back of an iPhone proudly displayed the Designed In California slogan. My iPhone X says only iPhone.
What does Apple say?
Apple CEO Tim Cook knows the truth and knows about truthiness.
It’s not true that iPhone isn’t built in the United States
Oh, really? My iPhone X, and each new iPhone I purchased for the past few years shipped from China to the U.S. I followed the shipping number trail. It may have arrived via FedEx or UPS, but it came from China, so clearly my recent iPhones have been made in China and not the U.S.
What’s going on?
Cook speaks truthiness. Many of iPhones components are made in the U.S. A manufacturing facility in Texas, for example, makes the vertical-cavity surface emitting lasers– the so-called VCSELs– for my iPhone X’s Face ID, housed behind the Notch.
To back up his truthiness, Cook pointed out that Apple employs almost 85,000 people in the U.S. and plans to hire tens of thousands more in the next few years. In addition to the massive Cupertino, CA urban sprawl that is One Infinite Loop and Apple Park, Apple owns and operates more than half a dozen data centers around the country. The U.S. of A country.
We are patriots. This is our country and we want to create as many jobs as we can in the U.S.
More truthiness. Apple could move all product manufacturing to the U.S. Apple could build all of its own parts in the U.S. Apple chooses, however, to build parts in other countries, to buy parts from manufacturers in other countries, and to have most iPhones assembled in China. Why? Money. Manufacturing and assembling everything in the U.S. is possible, but not pragmatic as it would drive up prices, reduce gross margins, and put a horrific squeeze on profits; not to mention APPL.
From a pragmatic perspective, China has manufacturing capabilities not found in the U.S. Yes, iPhones are assembled in China, and some of those parts are made in the U.S. and shipped to China for assembly. But parts come from Taiwan, Korea, Japan, China, and elsewhere. It is disingenuous to say iPhone is built in America.