Thursday, August 01, 2013

Pegatron labor abuse report points to 'budget' iPhone

Although Apple hasn't confirmed its rumored upcoming iPhone 5C "budget" iPhone, it seems a labor rights report has done so. Embedded in a report detailing alleged labor abuses at Pegatron, released on Monday, China Labor Watch mentioned a “scaled-back, less expensive version of the iPhone.”

An excerpt from the report said:
Today’s work is to paste protective film on the iPhone’s plastic back cover to prevent it from being scratched on assembly lines. This iPhone model with a plastic cover will soon be released on the market by Apple. The new cellphone has not yet been put into mass production, so quantity is not as important.
The report, which accuses Pegatron of violating Apple's Supplier Code of Conduct, as well as Chinese law, is the closest to official confirmation that we have seen to date of Apple’s long-rumored lower-cost iPhone.

The phone is expected to be more mid-range in price, perhaps around $300 - $400 unsubsidized. The lowest cost unsubsidized (off-contract) iPhone 5 runs $649. It's rumored that the device might release sometime in September, but that is all still speculation.

Although most associate Foxconn with Apple in terms of Chinese manufacturing of its devices, the Cupertino, Calif.-based company has begun pushing more work to Pegatron in order to reduce its dependence on Foxconn.

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