Nikkei Delivers another Nothing Burger Rumor about Foxconn's Wisconsin plant shifting focus to making Apple products
In January Patently Apple posted a report titled "While Apple's iPhone X was the #1 Smartphone in Q4, the Nikkei claims it was Disappointing and invents Dire Results for Q1." Apple went on to deliver another record quarter. The Nikkei has been known to be negative on Apple when it suits them and make forecasts that never see the light of day. With that in mind, the The Nikkei Asian Review is claiming today that Hon Hai Precision Industry, better known as Foxconn Technology Group, is considering producing small to medium-size displays for Apple with thin air as their proof.
The report notes that "Foxconn's shift to making diversifying displays for cars, personal computers, tablets, mobile devices, televisions and niche products is a change from its previous plan to churn out large panels, mainly 8K displays for TVs, at the new plant. Large panel production would have required a more complete local supply chain and greater initial investment in equipment.
Foxconn is the first Apple supplier and one of the most notable foreign companies to respond to U.S. President Donald Trump's "Made in America" call. Company Chairman and founder Terry Gou last July announced the plan to build a $10 billion LCD display project and create 13,000 jobs in Wisconsin over four years, an investment program that Trump said would not have taken place if not for his efforts to bring manufacturing back onto U.S. soil."
"Previously, Foxconn planned to build a 10.5th-generation display manufacturing factory, which is more suitable for large-sized displays," supply chain sources told Nikkei.
"But later they figured out that it might be more feasible and efficient to build a sixth-generation display plant or an 8.5th-generation factory from which they could move some equipment from Asia."
The report adds that "Sixth-generation panel plants mainly turn out smaller screens for mobile phones, tablets, notebooks, and wearable devices, while 8.5th-generation factories are optimal for making displays for tablets, notebooks, monitors and TVs. Both could make some niche products for medical or automotive use.
Eric Chiou, an analyst at market research group WitsView added that Foxconn's new facility would still aim to supply Apple's iPhones, although it is uncertain the company will be able to secure orders from the U.S. gadget maker. Sharp, owned by Foxconn, is a smaller supplier of 4.7 inch and 5.5 inch displays for iPhones than South Korea's LG Display and Japan Display Sharp also makes screens for iPads."
The report then admits that "Sharp is not a supplier for new iPhones in production later this year, and it does not make panels for Apple's MacBook laptops.
Foxconn did not immediately respond to the Nikkei Asian Review's request for comment. It is not clear whether the total planned investment of $10billion in Wisconsin would change at a later stage."
Once again the Nikkei creates a rumor without any major sources and tries to downplay the viability of Foxconn's future Wisconsin plant. While they point to Sharp being a display supplier, they readily admit that Sharp isn't even on Apple's radar for such supplies. For more on this nothing burger rumor of wild guesses, click here.
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