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  • Foxconn Replacing Workers with 1 Million Robots Over Next 3 Years


    Foxconn, best known in the US for manufacturing all things Apple, recently made a statement indicating that the company would be replacing some of its workforce with automated robots.

    Late last Friday, while attending a workers dance party, Foxconn founder and chairman, Terry Gou said, “The robots will be used to do simple and routine work such as spraying, welding and assembling which are now mainly conducted by workers.”

    Currently, Foxconn has 10,000 robots working for the company, but expects that number to rise to 300,000 by next year. By 2014, the company expects to have nearly a million robots working for them in their manufacturing plants.

    It’s currently unclear just how many human employees will be replaced by these new robots. Foxconn currently employs approximately 1.2 million workers throughout China.

    Foxconn has been widely criticized for the grueling working conditions that employees are forced to endure. Last year a string of suicides were attributed to the harsh working conditions in their plants.

    In the future, if Foxconn chooses to do away with human employees altogether, then at some point, they may face a robot workforce that is as unhappy with the working condition, as the human employees are today.

    Source: Xinhua News
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Foxconn Replacing Workers with 1 Million Robots Over Next 3 Years started by Wiley John Wright View original post
    Comments 23 Comments
    1. Megaorange's Avatar
      Megaorange -
      Then come the highest rate of robot suicides lol
    1. RICO_'s Avatar
      RICO_ -
      Quote Originally Posted by Megaorange View Post
      Then come the highest rate of robot suicides lol
      Yeah....the working conditions are so bad even the robots will self-destruct. :P

      No but in all seriousness, that's probably the very reason FoxConn is doing this.....to combat bad working conditions. Although there are certain things better left to humans such as maintenance and quality control, robots will most likely provide more output and greater precision.

      This may be the end of the infamous supply shortages of new Apple product launches......hopefully.
    1. Orby's Avatar
      Orby -
      Quote Originally Posted by RICO_ View Post
      Yeah....the working conditions are so bad even the robots will self-destruct. :P

      No but in all seriousness, that's probably the very reason FoxConn is doing this.....to combat bad working conditions. Although there are certain things better left to humans such as maintenance and quality control, robots will most likely provide more output and greater precision.
      Never mind cheaper labor. You have to pay to feed, clothe, house, and -gasp!- provide disposable income to a human. Robots don't care.

      Good for Foxconn--many automotive makers use robots extensively in their plants (particularly American ones, but I'm holding my tongue). If they can build a machine that does as good, if not a better job, than a human; they should. More power to them.
    1. danielbonnells's Avatar
      danielbonnells -
      Perhaps this will cause more suicides... 1 million people unemployed? that could lead to bad things...
    1. Soulr3nder's Avatar
      Soulr3nder -
      Rise of the machines. I guess the terminator movie is gonna come true after all.
    1. satointl's Avatar
      satointl -
      That's great but it's ironic. If 1 million people if not more in the future are going to be unemployed, then what's the point of using a ton of robots if you can't buy anything without money?
    1. RICO_'s Avatar
      RICO_ -
      They're not sure how many out of 1.2 million employees 1million robots will replace? Probably a good majority of them. Thats nearly one robot for every employee.....not to mention the fact that one robot could possibly replace more than one employee. Nowadays you can build and program robots to do practically anything......assemble, measure, polish, stack, transport. There's even robots that can check and see if what OTHER robots did is correct or not. And they don't even need a lunch break or a day off.

      Quote Originally Posted by satointl View Post
      That's great but it's ironic. If 1 million people if not more in the future are going to be unemployed, then what's the point of using a ton of robots if you can't buy anything without money?
      Because there are millions of people in the United States and other countries that WILL buy the products that Foxconn rolls out for Apple.
    1. tudtran's Avatar
      tudtran -
      Quote Originally Posted by megaorange View Post
      then come the highest rate of robot suicides lol

      lol
    1. indyracer05's Avatar
      indyracer05 -
      I can totally see the Terminator Apocolypse occuring soon cuz of this
      someday Humans<Robots...
    1. BenderRodriguez's Avatar
      BenderRodriguez -
      Way to make unemployment rise and your profits rise greedy ppl SUCK
    1. mytran80's Avatar
      mytran80 -
      Quote Originally Posted by indyracer05 View Post
      I can totally see the Terminator Apocolypse occuring soon cuz of this
      someday Humans<Robots...
      Until the world runs out of oil , the human workers will prevail again , power to the people
    1. swifty7's Avatar
      swifty7 -
      this makes me sad to think that a million people will lose their jobs down the road. China truly has no regard for human life.
    1. RICO_'s Avatar
      RICO_ -
      Quote Originally Posted by swifty7 View Post
      this makes me sad to think that a million people will lose their jobs down the road. China truly has no regard for human life.
      If everyone thought that way then the simple thing to do is for a mass boycott on everything that Foxconn produces. But of course that won't happen and people will continue to buy their products at an accelerated rate; therefore, from a business standpoint, the logical thing to do would be to expand productivity by putting in the robots. I don't think they want to let go of a million workers......it's just an unfortunate consequence of the efficiency of robots.

      It sucks.....but that's the world we live in. Even trash pickup in alot of places is done by a giant robotic arm attached to the truck instead of the traditional two guys hanging from the back of the truck.
    1. rkswat's Avatar
      rkswat -
      Quote Originally Posted by swifty7 View Post
      this makes me sad to think that a million people will lose their jobs down the road. China truly has no regard for human life.
      Not saying you're not correct but what does foxcon replacing workers with robots have to do with China's human rights situation?

      I don't give a hooties cow what happens at foxcon.
    1. ccoltmanm's Avatar
      ccoltmanm -
      Quote Originally Posted by RICO_ View Post

      It sucks.....but that's the world we live in. Even trash pickup in alot of places is done by a giant robotic arm attached to the truck instead of the traditional two guys hanging from the back of the truck.
      Businesses are not around to provide jobs, they are around to make a profit.
    1. RICO_'s Avatar
      RICO_ -
      Quote Originally Posted by ccoltmanm View Post
      Businesses are not around to provide jobs, they are around to make a profit.
      I'm well aware of that.

      Quote Originally Posted by RICO_ View Post
      therefore, from a business standpoint, the logical thing to do would be to expand productivity by putting in the robots. I don't think they want to let go of a million workers......it's just an unfortunate consequence of the efficiency of robots.
      But ask yourself this.....what would happen if every business employed a very small work force and ran almost entirely on robots? How can they turn a profit if the vast majority of the country is unemployed without income due to being replaced by robots?
    1. satointl's Avatar
      satointl -
      Quote Originally Posted by RICO_ View Post
      They're not sure how many out of 1.2 million employees 1million robots will replace? Probably a good majority of them. Thats nearly one robot for every employee.....not to mention the fact that one robot could possibly replace more than one employee. Nowadays you can build and program robots to do practically anything......assemble, measure, polish, stack, transport. There's even robots that can check and see if what OTHER robots did is correct or not. And they don't even need a lunch break or a day off.



      Because there are millions of people in the United States and other countries that WILL buy the products that Foxconn rolls out for Apple.
      Say everyone gets replaced.
    1. mmaboi21's Avatar
      mmaboi21 -
      Wow that's sad... Typical business trying to make a profit. I feel for the people who are going to lose their jobs.
    1. mytran80's Avatar
      mytran80 -
      Quote Originally Posted by satointl View Post
      That's great but it's ironic. If 1 million people if not more in the future are going to be unemployed, then what's the point of using a ton of robots if you can't buy anything without money?
      that's true but the corporations can only think about is the "now factor"

      Quote Originally Posted by swifty7 View Post
      this makes me sad to think that a million people will lose their jobs down the road. China truly has no regard for human life.
      it's not just china

      Quote Originally Posted by mmaboi21 View Post
      Wow that's sad... Typical business trying to make a profit. I feel for the people who are going to lose their jobs.
      i know , the communist party should get directly involved and make things right but sadly the money that foxconn brings in for the country's economy itself is more important than the small individual workers
    1. TEvil's Avatar
      TEvil -
      is that a still frame from dawn of the dead?

      some of those girls are kinda cute... like little gerbils, you just want to watch them run on a big wheel!

      TEvil's Blog

      BRAAAAAAAAAAAINS!