Future iPhone Batteries To Be Manufactured By Robots [Rumor]

Artist's impression of what a future Apple battery production line might look like.

Artist’s impression of what a future Apple battery production line might look like.

Apple is set to start producing all its iPhone batteries on automated production lines starting later this year, according to a report from DigiTimes.

The decision is reportedly related to minimum wages rising in China — combined with labor shortages and high turnovers of staff, who have to be trained to use the manufacturing machinery.

Apple has already automated its Mac Pro and iMac production lines, with only the materials and final assembling phases of manufacturing requiring manpower. Automating the production of iPhone batteries would represent a significant long-term cost saving advance for the manufacturing process.

Automated production lines would also allow Apple to move manufacturing wherever it likes — although it is likely that it would stay in China, since this is where most of the company’s component supply partners are based.

The news regarding the automated battery production lines comes on the back of reports that both Pegatron and Foxconn are gearing up to begin production on the next generation iPhone.

Competition between the two companies to win contracts from Apple has heated up over the past year — with Taiwan’s Pegatron Corp undercutting Foxconn to be awarded an increased amount of manufacturing work from Apple.

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About the author

Luke DormehlLuke Dormehl is a UK-based journalist and author, with a background working in documentary film for Channel 4 and the BBC. He is the author of The Formula: How Algorithms Solve All Our Problems, And Create More and The Apple Revolution, both published by Penguin/Random House. His tech writing has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, Techmeme, and other publications. He'd like you a lot if you followed him on Twitter.

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