Apple Products Must be Made in China Because of Rare Earths [Report]

Apple Products Must be Made in China Because of Rare Earths [Report]

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Cheap manufacturing isn't the only reason Apple manufacturers its products in China, reveals iFixit. It turns out that Apple may not be able to manufacturer its products elsewhere due to its use of rare earths.

iPad manufacturing, like the manufacturing of other electronics, requires a significant amount of rare earth elements, the 17 difficult-to-mine elements used in all kinds of green technology. It's hard to say exactly what rare earths are in an iPad, since Apple is really tight-lipped about their materials-no one can even get them to confirm what manufacturer makes their impact-resistant glass, though I suspect Asahi. Cambridge engineering professor Dr. Tim Coombs guesses that there may be lanthanum in the iPad's lithium-ion polymer battery, as well as "a range of rare earths to produce the different colours" in the display. The magnets along the side of the iPad and in its cover (pictured above) are possibly a neodymium alloy. Electronics glass is often polished with cerium oxide.

According to the report, China controls 95-97% of the world's supply of rare earths and the country has repeatedly cut export quotas which have caused prices to skyrocket.

The only way an American electronics company can be exempt from China's rare earth export quotas, is to manufacture within China. President Obama recently lodged a complaint over the country's rare earth policy with the World Trade Organization; however, his complaint is viewed by many as being 'too little, too late'.

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Apple Products Must be Made in China Because of Rare Earths [Report]

ted - April 21, 2012 at 12:43am
what a lie ... why do not you explain moving out of China would leave Chinese no choice but drop prices but they desperately try to make reason to stay while .. the one and only reasom is CHEAP AND SLAVE LABOR
Your-Moma - April 20, 2012 at 3:21pm
And your xbox ps3 and flat screen tv aint made with "cheap slave labour".... Loser
Mike - April 20, 2012 at 1:12pm
Ts cheap labour thats it
John - April 20, 2012 at 8:44am
Hey it was recently found lots of rare earth in my home town, Araxa in Brazil, and a Brazilian Bilionare that is supposely Foxconn's partner in Brazil came to see it here. So I guess Apple is looking for options. Right after he had a meatting with Tim Cook, by the way.
seiko - April 20, 2012 at 3:25am
can't wait to see the fresh new apple products say made in brazil!
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