Foxconn and Apple are set to move Mac Mini production back to the US. This is per a new report that DigiTimes has published, which contradicts the 1st reports that it would be the Mac Pro being brought back.
“Apple is reportedly set to move its Mac mini production lines back to the US with Foxconn Electronics (Hon Hai Precision Industry) to be responsible of handling establishment, according to sources from the upstream supply chain.”
It also included information that Foxconn already has 15 operating bases in the US and they are planning to start recruiting for new automated production lines in 2013. DigiTimes has been a hit or miss blog out of Asia that has broken major stories along with completely blowing countless others. Keep that in mind with any and all of their reports, but the production of whichever Mac line is sure to start shortly.
One reason the Mac Mini could be the Apple choice is demand. They have reported sales expectations should rise to 1.8 million units in 2013, which would be up 30 percent from 2012. The Mini is a small for factor computer that starts at $599 and does not include a display or keyboard by default. It does include the newest software, Mac OS Mountain Lion and even offers a Mini with OS X Server for $1,000.
Many users cite the small footprint as the key selling point along with the lower market entry price. It can also be used as a home media server if the existing Apple TV does not fulfill the needs of the niche consumer.
The Pro still boasts a few good reasons on why it will be the choice. Fortune’s Philip Elmer-Dewitt points out several reasons the Mac Pro is his best guess. Tim Cook stated the move will be a $100 million investment and “Only the Mac Pro and Mini sell fewer than 1 million per year,” Elmer-Dewitt says.
Another angle is weight with the Pro. It’s much heavier than the Mini and much more expensive to ship from overseas. The mini starts at 2.7 pounds, while the Pro is coming it at 40 pounds. With the Mini not including a screen it makes the production process a little easier and cheaper. Displays on many products are now a single piece or an integrated part of other components. Many of the screen providers are not moving to the US and having these facilities near display providers is a major advantage.