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50% Rejection Rate For iPhone Casings Produced In India Show Scale of Apple's Challenge

Wednesday February 15, 2023. 12:20 AM , from Slashdot
A 50% rejection rate for iPhone casings produced by an Indian company is a stark illustration of the difficulties Apple faces in reducing its dependence on China. 9to5Mac reports: Apple's target for casings that fail to pass quality control is 0%, with Chinese suppliers reportedly getting extremely close to this. The attitude of Indian suppliers is also said to compare poorly with the can-do approach of Chinese companies, with one former Apple engineer saying that there is no sense of urgency in its Indian supply chain...

The Financial Times reports that poor yields is a key challenge faced by Apple in attempting to replicate its Chinese supply chain in India: 'At an iPhone casings factory in Hosur run by Indian conglomerate Tata, one of Apple's suppliers, just about one out of every two components coming off the production line is in good enough shape to eventually be sent to Foxconn, Apple's assembly partner for building iPhones, according to a person familiar with the matter. This 50 per cent 'yield' fares badly compared with Apple's goal for zero defects. Two people that have worked in Apple's offshore operations said the factory is on a plan towards improving proficiency but the road ahead is long.'

Tech entrepreneur and academic Vivek Wadhwa said that it will likely take three years or so for Indian suppliers to be capable of the kind of volume production needed to make a noticeable dent in Chinese production. He also suggested that Apple, too, will need to adapt -- especially when it comes to dealing with the bureaucratic government: 'He suggested its engineers learn the art of jugaad -- a way of 'making do' or transcending obstacles. 'Because everything in India is an obstacle,' he said.'

Read more of this story at Slashdot.
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