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iPhone 6 will not be delayed by Chinese wheel hub factory explosion

John Cox | Aug. 6, 2014
Foxconn iPhone product unaffected by temporary shutdown.

One of those factories is owned by Foxconn, which is the biggest assembler of Apple products, including the iPhone. Without knowing anything about the Kunshan facility, or even about inventory management, some writers and commenters speculated that the shutdown could delay assembly and delivery of the iPhone 6.

But the Bloomberg story declares that "Foxconn doesn't assemble Apple products in Kunshan and most of its manufacturing takes place elsewhere." Here's a high-level map of Foxconn facilities in China, from "The politics of global production: Apple, Foxconn and China's new working class," published in August 2013 by The Asia-Pacific Journal.

Even if the Foxconn plant had been assembling iPhones, or iPhone parts, it would be unlikely for a temporary suspension to seriously affect production. That's the case for GM, which uses these wheel hubs. The DetroitBureau.com, which covers the automotive industry, asked GM about possible delays in its own production as a result of the explosion. "GM officials told TheDetroitBureau.com today that it has 'sufficient inventory of the effected parts and [they] do not expect an impact on production,'" according to the web post.

If Apple plans to release new iPhone models in September or October, then its suppliers have been ramping up production and assembly, to reach some target number of phones on hand for retail purchase and shipment, and to create a pipeline of inventory to meet anticipated demand going forward.

 

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