iPhone maker replaces half its factory workers with robots

Tim Cook greeting Foxconn workers in China. Photo: Apple
Tim Cook meeting with (human) Foxconn workers.
Photo: Apple

Apple manufacturer Foxconn has been talking about investing in robots for years now, but apparently it’s finally done it — replacing more than half of the employees at one of its factories with machines.

“The Foxconn factory has reduced its employee strength from 110,000 to 50,000, thanks to the introduction of robots,” said a government official, adding that “it has tasted success in reduction of labour costs” and that more companies are now likely to follow suit.

Liam can’t recycle every iPhone, even with 29 arms

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Apple's new robot, Liam, is a recycling machine, but so are we...
Photo: Apple/YouTube

Liam, Apple’s robot that deconstructs iPhones to mine the valuable resources inside them, is certainly cool — but he’s still not the recycling machine we deserve (or need).

Just like any Apple product, Liam was designed to work well. But how much good does the robot, which took three years to develop and build, actually do?

A savvy Apple fan has sent a robot to queue for her iPhone 6s

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It certainly beats sitting out in the cold.
Photo: Atomic 212

People are already camping out for the iPhone 6s, but one smart would-be customer from Australia has decided to dodge the queues — by sending a robot on her behalf.

Lucy Kelly dispatched the robot — a remote-controlled tablet attached to a Segway — to wait in line at the flagship Apple Store in Sydney, where the iPhone 6s will go on sale ahead of the rest of the world. It gives her the ability to join in the fun of waiting alongside eager Apple fans, without the negative part of standing around for hours in the cold.

Now why didn’t we think of that?

Carrot Weather’s sassy forecasts storm onto Mac

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The "Maker" of sassy robot Carrot brought the Weather app to the Mac and updated the iOS app with new goodies.
Photo: George Tinari/Cult of Mac

The sassy robot that got its start on iOS has started taking over the Mac too. Carrot Weather launched in the Mac App Store today complete with tons of features and even more snarky comments about the conditions. The self-proclaimed “weather robot with a personality” has plenty to offer.

This robot leaps hurdles like a Terminator horse

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Sarah Connor won't get away so easily next time.
Photo: MIT

Okay, so it’s not really Apple news, but — honestly — who could complain about a robot cheetah on a Friday afternoon?

Given Google’s disappointing lack of killer robots at its oddly boring I/O keynote yesterday, MIT has fortunately stepped up to the plate by unleashing a new video of its metallic quadruped autonomously leaping hurdles like some kind of horse Terminator.

Check out the video below. Then start running.