CUPERTINO, Calif. (CAP) - Officials for Apple Inc. say problems with the new iPhone 6 can be traced back to issues with manufacturing, specifically a "less than stellar crop" of sweatshop workers, especially in the 8- to 12-year-old range. The company acknowledges that improvements are needed in the hiring process.
"The quality of child labor has decreased significantly over the past five years and we don't know why," said HR Director Denise Smith. "But if we have any hope of continuing to cut corners to save a buck, we have to figure it out."
Smith noted that while beneficial to the people themselves, advances in human rights in Third World countries have had a detrimental effect on the hiring practices of companies like Apple, HP and Nike. That coupled with increased educational opportunities for children throughout the world has left companies such as Apple scraping the bottom of the barrel for child labor.
"Once was the time when the kids we hired could actually locate our design flaws and even fix them on the fly," said Director of Research and Development Mark Kimball. "But now those kids are in school and actually doing something with their lives.
"These days, we're lucky if the kids can tell the difference between printed circuit board trace impedance and directivity error calculations," Kimball added.
Activist groups like Amnesty International have long urged Apple to use onshore labor for its manufacturing or at the very least, illegal labor that is over 18 years old. Apple's public response continues to be that paying adults is too cost prohibitive.
"If we had to pay living wages, that new iPhone 6 you just bought would cost like $300," Director of Retail Operations Angela Ahrendts told CAP News. When reminded that the new iPhone 6 does cost $300, she added, "Umm, I meant $350.
"Besides, adult fingers are way too big for those tiny circuit boards," Ahrendts noted. "It won't be long before we're scouting toddlers who have a decent handle on their fine motor skills."
Meanwhile, Apple has released a fix for the iPhone 6 to keep it from warping in consumers' pockets, which consists of a steel rod to be affixed to the back of the phone to give it additional support.
"Or you can just buy a case for it," said Kimball. "And not one of those sissy rubber ones, either; get something that actually protects a $300 computer you can fit in your pocket."
- CAP News Staff