Despite Apple’s iPhone 6S being a tremendous hit, Apple seems to be drawing flak from communities. China is a significant supplier of iPhone and Apple products and manufactures them at its local plants. These privately owned plants require that a shift of 8 hours a day and five days a week doesn't meet the hiring requirements. The laborers of these plants work a minimum of 9 hours a day and draw many overtime hours to meet the required living expenses. The company had drawn criticism earlier, for failing to control labor exploitation, in the process of its product manufacturing. The recent allegation has been made by a China Labor watchdog, who claims that the working conditions are inhumane and unhygienic. The agency also argued that the workers live in cramped dormitories. The dormitories are unsanitary and offer the least privacy to its female workers. The people buying any product should be aware of the entire process of manufacturing.
Low wages and Long working hours persists on iPhone factories in China
Allegations and complaints about facilities on factories aren't new to Apple. The company had earlier been criticized by the technical community on working conditions prevalent in the manufacture of products(Ballew). The company had previously made attempts to sort out the problem. The frameworks and guidelines remained at large on paper but were never realized. The company now has policies to ensure proper auditing of the manufacturer's accounts. These steps were necessary, but still, there is a lack of proper implementation of the surveys and audits. The manufacturing plants at China thus take full advantage of the lax policy implementation and exploit its workforce to the maximum(Delin).
An investigator associated with official China Labor Watchdog had made supportive claims to these allegations. The investigator said that the workers earn $1.85 USD per hour and push for additional overtime. The overtimes are necessary for the labor to enable them to pay for their living. The standard shift was 8 hours per day, but come September; the workforce works additional 20 hours of overtime per week(Workforce). The extra overtime is split between 2 extra hours per shift on weekdays and an additional ten-hour shift on Saturdays. After summation of the extra hours, the workers earn $753 in monthly wages. That aforementioned overtime hour was necessarily the minimum allowed overtime. The plant on which the report is based is the largest producer of iPhones in China. The manufacturing concern named Pegatron is located at Shanghai and supplies 30 percent of all iPhones in the world.
How the United States did not survive on iPhone manufacturing
American workers are the most educated, upon comparison with their counterparts working overseas. But people who culture technical learning say that the country has ceased to train sufficient workers in the middle-level skills that factories require. That has had a huge impact on the manufacturing sector of electronic goods. Until lately, Apple boasted of its American made products. But a current trend shows that almost 70 percent Apple products are outsourced from Asian countries. There are 40,000 employees in the US and 20,000 employees overseas who are directly employed by Apple. That's an absurd figure, but is true and is supported by the annual report of the company. Many additional workers are used by the manufacturers, and the amount runs up to 7, 00,000 workers, building and assembling Apple's products ("Incremental Innovation Brings Benefits, Argue Manufacturers"). Apple is a typical example of how products are increasingly being manufactured overseas. The sole notion that labor is cheap overseas is not the only concern of Apple. But the main cause lies in the fact that overseas plants excel at higher degrees of flexibility, industrial skills, and diligence of foreign workers. These necessary skills have outpaced American workers by a significant margin. The outpacing margin is such large that it is no longer feasible and viable for the Apple products to be tagged as “Made in U.S.A”. It was the only option as per Apple’s spokesperson who said that the Chinese firms are the inevitable consequences of high global demand as they deliver with such exceptional speed and efficiency (Annual Report).
Suicides, riots speak of impending violence at Foxconn’s iPhone factories
The Foxconn is a leading supplier of iPhone and its associated products. The company has vast operations in several provinces of China (B?ggild and Podlech 102-105). The company employs around a million employees in all of its plants. The manufacturing outlet in Taiyuan employed over 70, 000 people and was witness to a massive act of violence. Foxconn officially quoted this an escalation of the personal dispute. Apparently, that wasn't a personal conflict that involved more than 2000 workers running riot inside the factory premises. Chinese authorities are investigating the probable causes. The company had again stressed that the matter was not related to work but a personal dispute among multiple employees. News has constantly been pouring in about incidents that have been occurring at Foxconn’s plants. There had been reports of suicides by employees, two incidents of the explosion and constant reports of harsh working conditions by the plant (May et al.). The pay might be higher than other similar jobs in China, but the wage barely covers the rent of the dormitories in which the employees are made to reside. Managers rarely allow leaves and time off simply because many people can readily replace the noncompliant employee. But sources in Apple say that the company is highly dedicated to the cause of compliance of working standards. The company works around the clock, in providing scrutinizing measures and to ensure that the working conditions are not inhumane and derogatory in nature. The suicides and violence are not isolated but are entwined with the root causes still untouched ("Apple Advertisement" 103-103). Apple may audit the accounts and survey the workplace of their foreign manufacturers, but unless there are efforts from the private sector, this problem won’t be resolved very soon enough. The ongoing crisis can only be resolved if Chinese regulatory authorities step their vigilance.
Effects of Globalization and the ideology of Apple Inc.
The effect of globalization resulted in increased global sales and revenue in the context of Apple Inc. The globalization has provided the grounds for Apple to shift their product manufacturing base to overseas (Boudreaux). The globalization has paved the way for Apple relying on the efficiency of the Chinese to hasten production. A company such as Apple has benefited at large due to globalization. Apple is a creative company, contrary to popular belief that Apple is a product based company. Apple often gives the product at minimum profits at slim costs. So the profit margin of the manufacturers is also highly constrained. So it is natural for the manufacturers to try and take every route possible to save costs and exploit labor.
The ideology of Apple, in the beginning, was pure. The company believed that they need to develop an individual product in a single product segment that would ultimately become the leaders in that product segment (Venugopal 71). The ideology still holds true, and the company focused on developing consumer products of high-end ranges. The key strategy of the company is to focus on the quality and in-depth experience of the user. The company develops such a product that is high in self-esteem value and is more appealing than contemporary products. The price simply doesn't concern the customer who demands high-end technology fusion with amazing aesthetics, art, and beauty of the product. The customers are attracted towards the Apple's product because it increases their social stature (Franzak, Little and Pitta 123-127). The ideology of the company to keep it straightforward and efficient that would be pioneers in their segments paved the way for Apple's huge global success through successive years. The product is the key to Apple's success through many years of operation. The product though is not being manufactured domestically but is being outsourced to overseas manufacturers to increase efficiency and flexibility in operations.
iPhone 6 plus consumes double data than iPhone 6
The relatively large size of the iPhone 6 plus which is more similar to a tablet that consumes massive battery power. The phone consumes a lot of battery power in addition to drawing a huge data resource (Brackett). The users of iPhone 6 consume as much as relatively 50 percent fewer data than the users using the relatively larger iPhone 6 Plus. The report was first published by technology enterprise virtualization firm named Citrix. The data consumption fact was correlated by Citrix after surveying thousands of iPhone users. The users had to answer a questionnaire based on their iPhone using experience and rate the interactive score of the process. The users of the larger series 6 model complained of being unable to use the phone when wifi is not available. The phone has a relatively larger screen, which aids users in being able to view large sized windows. The larger screen size means more screen resolution which aids in further consumption of high-quality videos. That is the most accountable cause of this problem. The rate of data consumption is such that it is approximate twice the volume used by iPhone 6 users when viewing video content online (Soest and Hurd).
The increased data consumption means an escalation of costs of 4th generation mobile data. The cost of mobile internet is significantly higher, as one goes up in the available bandwidth segments. The people would not like to be drained of their mobile data while viewing a few minutes of videos online (Jolly and Latifi 558). The sales of iPhone6 plus have resulted in the declining of sales of iPads. The probable cause of this phenomenon is that the iPhone6 Plus is almost the same size as an iPad. People want to achieve higher degrees of mobility at a lesser cost and less burden on the cumbersome activity of carrying an iPad throughout the day.
The documented kitchen’s of the world, what the world eats
An American photographer named Peter Menzel, and author Faith D' Aluisio had set out to travel the world together. In light of their journey, they set out to explore the contents of kitchens across the world. They wanted to venture into the kitchens of ordinary and general public and document their experiences. The duo had a particular purpose in mind; they specifically wanted to know, how much money a family utilizes in supplementing their diets (Adey). The traveler pair, after visiting many nations and ordinary households surveyed and enquired about the cost of food of families living in varying social and financial backgrounds. The travelers have set out on the journey to document the most primal of human behaviors- what a family eats. The name of their project is "Hungry Planet" and it gives a detailed account of how and what an average family eats in a given week. The project also took into account the cost of the weekly food budget. The travelers released their documented book “Hungry Planet: what the world eats” in the year of 2005. The book showcases average families featuring from 24 different nationalities.
The family of Tingo, Ecuador who was called, the Ayme family was spotted and documented with a large stash of vegetables. The South-Malian Natomo family of Kouakourou province was seen posing on the terrace of their ancestral home with sacks of grains. The favorite food of the family of Madsen, Greenland according to an unambiguous decision by all members had considered polar bear meat as the most likable. They also said that they would prefer a mid-sized toothed whale or the skin of a narwhal (Goggin 231-244).
The Hungry Planet gained popularity, and the portraits of the book were showcased by the Nobel Peace Centre to give viewers a look into the kitchens of the world. The paintings gave a sneak peek into the world of home cuisine all over the world, offering views of real kitchens from China to Kuwait, to Hong Kong to Mexico.
The world is an expensive place to live in nowadays. The ever increasing cost of food production to never dwindling effects of inflation has resulted that we start seeking alternatives to our current modes of operation or production. The sustainable and holistic development needs to be combined with efficiency in energy management and food production. The Apple Incorporated has taken necessary steps to regulate their ethical production, but very less has been physically achieved. To learn from the mistakes of the past, the human race needs to improvise and modify their life. The human race is an intelligent race, which has the capability to transform the world in any way possible. So it is the utmost responsibility of the smart race to aid in sustainable developmental practices. The organizations involved in the trading and profiting must treat their employees and workforce in a dignified manner. The companies must seek to deliver on the cause of corporate social responsibility.
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