back to article Foxconn reports $17.6m 1st-half loss as robot legion grows

Foxconn International, which makes components for Apple, Motorola Mobility and Nokia products, has seen considerably reduced first-half losses this year, though its outlook is still uncertain. The unit of Taiwanese electronic components conglomerate Foxconn Technology Group reported an unaudited loss of $17.6m, compared to a …


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  1. Mondo the Magnificent

    Roboots don't come cheaply

    Assembly robots are a costly item. They needs to be installed, commissioned a and calibrated. Let's not forget about maintenance and repairs too..

    All this requires human intervention, plus someone has to keep an eye on them too..

    The biggest concern has to be the ROTM factor, you never know, those robots could stage a coup one fine day...

    1. jubtastic1

      Have you seen them?

      Their leg-less torsos are bolted to the table, while the hunched upper body and arms imitate the cramped workers they replace, if these robots had faces, they would look like Marvin.

      1. CmdrX3

        You know are right

        The robot does look a little paranoid in that first picture. It looks like maybe Marvin and a lady Robosapien have got together and made a baby.

    2. James Woods


      A robot may cost money but a robot won't sue you, won't claim unemployment, won't quit, won't show up drunk, etc...

      Once installed most robotic operations are not maintained to the extent that they should be so the line of them needing people to service them doesn't really float. Most companies will simply hire a guy to work at the company to resolve robotic issues either part or full time so outside help is rarely needed.

      I've seen benefits on both sides. Robots will do jobs people do not want to do however at the same time a robotic operation is a real wakeup call to an economy.

      So much goes into making even a simple robot do something you could say to yourself boy look at how much work has gone into building this thing; that must really help jobs but it doesn't; unless your idea of jobs is creating them in china since that's where most of it will probably have come from minus the china price-tag.

  2. Alan Denman

    Is the robot Steve Jobs?

    So what's with the rumour that Apple gave them the sack and 'moved on'.

    If true, would this not mean that this story just to distract from the 'main event'?

    Of course its historically normal for one can comment.

  3. Figgus


    Everyone bemoaned the terrible working conditions and wages the Foxconn workers got, and now they have been improved. Of course, many of them will also be downsized as the employer tries to balance the costs. Everything has a price.

    Interestingly, this is almost exactly what happened to the labor markets in the US, yet still nobody seems to have figured it out. Obama still pushes for more expenses for employers, yet laments when the jobs vanish in a puff of socio-economic smoke. Everything has a price, you see....

  4. Alan Brown Silver badge

    assembly workers.....

    Alvin Toffler predicted this issue 40+ years ago.

    In other areas it's called "village idiot symdrome" - the village idiot can pitch hay with the rest of the boys, but would you trust him to drive your half-million pound John Deere combine harvester?

    OTOH one could take the Pol Pot solution - "There are too many people on the planet, kill 1/3 of them", but this isn't acceptable on a whole multitude of levels.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    machines v people

    If the work is done by machines then wouldn't it negate a chunk of the cost savings from going to cheap labour markets, after all the investment in the machine is the same no matter where you site it and I would assume there is a lot less variability in running costs than there is in labour costs.

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