Foxconn, which is Apple’s primary supplier for components, expects to deploy more robots in their factories to help with production in the next three years. While human workers are the main resource in their factories today, the company expects to automatize 70% of its assembly line work.
The Taiwanese manufacturing plant currently employs 1 million workers in China. However, company CEO Terry Gou said that he has been investing in robotics research and hopes to one day deploy a “robot army” at the company’s factories to offset labour costs and improve manufacturing.
“I think in the future, young people won’t do this kind of work, and won’t enter the factories,” said Gou.
A while back, Foxconn has faced criticism regarding working conditions, long hours and harsh treatment from its employees and both Foxconn and Apple have promised to improve the labour conditions. The resulting outcome proves to be a good quality and production improvement, but the cost of achieving it would most likely displease Foxconn’s employees even more.
Despite the increase in automation, certain Foxconn facilities in China still heavily rely on human workers. The factory in Zhengzhou, China, assembling Apple’s iPhone for instance, has been known to employ 300,000 workers.
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