Will Foxconn plant closure hurt iPhone 5?

Shortages of the highly coveted new phone could get worse after a brawl at a factory in China.

By Benzinga Sep 24, 2012 11:45AM
The Apple Inc. logo is displayed on the back of the new MacBook Pro David Paul Morris, Bloomberg via Getty ImagesBy Louis Bedigian

Foxconn has temporarily closed one of its assembly plants after a large brawl broke out in northern China, sparking concerns about the effect it might have on Apple's (AAPL) iPhone 5.

According to Reuters, the fight involved roughly 2,000 workers and as many as 5,000 members of law enforcement who were sent to a Foxconn dormitory at a plant in Taiyuan to end the violence.

Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., the parent company of Foxconn, has not said which of its plants assemble Apple products or components. The Taiyuan plant is believed to be one of the Foxconn facilities that produces the iPhone 5, which was released in the U.S. last week.

Thus far, demand for the iPhone 5 has caused Apple to delay the shipping date for many iPhone 5 orders placed online. The company confirmed the supply shortage after announcing that more than 2 million preorders were placed in just 24 hours. AT&T (T) is among the many carriers that have reaped the benefits of the iPhone 5's release.

Early Monday morning, Apple announced that it had sold more than 5 million iPhone 5s, surpassing the first weekend sales of the iPhone 4S by more than 1 million units.

In addition to the device itself, consumers are also purchasing the new Lightning adapter for the iPhone 5, creating a shortage for that as well.

When the device was finally released at 8 am EST Friday, consumers lined up all over the world, with self-proclaimed iPhone groupies leading the charge. The device has already broken international sales records and is expected to push Apple's stock above $850. One study suggests the lines of people waiting for the iPhone 5 were 83% longer than the lines for the iPhone 4S.

Despite these and other success stories, there have been a few blemishes that have kept the iPhone 5 from achieving a flawless launch. On the day the product was released, SBB, the national railway of Switzerland, expressed its disappointment with Apple for copying the design of its famous clock.

Last week, consumers and tech bloggers began to share their complaints about the new Maps App, which replaced Google (GOOG) Maps after Apple decided not to renew its contract with the search giant.

Despite these issues, the iPhone 5 is still expected to continue breaking sales records.

More from Benzinga

Sep 24, 2012 6:38PM
Sep 24, 2012 6:40PM

I know my HTC phone is probably built in a swet shop as well, but I dont have any proof of that.  We have proof of it against Apple.  And my HTC phoen didnt cost nearly as much as the iPhone does.  I will never buy an Apple product as long as I live.  Greedy crooked companies and their management teams all deserve to rot in hell.

Sep 24, 2012 5:08PM
I thought they said the workers that were fighting were the people building Nintendo items.
Sep 24, 2012 6:24PM
They need to stop working for a raggley **** 320.00 per month, hopefully the chinese wont get taxed by our govt. 
Sep 24, 2012 6:38PM

Living in the factory dorms?  Wow thats sad.  Whats even more sad is that apple knowing uses this company and exploits these people to build their overprices POS phones.  Each iPhone costs more than each employee makes in a month and apple is just fine with that. 


What a shameful greedy company.  At least they will all answer for it when they stand before the lord on the day of their judgement and when their reasoning for acting that way is profits it will be a fast trip to hell for all of eternity for them.

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