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Some New Apple iMacs May Be Assembled in the USA

By - Source: CNN Money | B 24 comments

Multiple reports claim that new iMacs are being assembled here in the States.

A CNN Money reader wrote in on Saturday claiming that his brand new 21-inch iMac purchased at an Apple Store in San Jose, California had a label reading "Assembled in USA" rather than the typical "Assembled in China" sticker. The Apple customer even took a snapshot, showing the company's address and the "Assembled in USA" description.

Philip Elmer-DeWitt of CNN Money said on Saturday that he checked with a neighbor who just purchased a new 21-inch iMac last week from the Apple Store located on 14th Street in Manhattan. Unsurprisingly, this all-in-one Mac was marked as "Assembled in China".

"We can be pretty sure Apple hasn't transported its entire iMac manufacturing operations back to the States," Elmer-DeWitt writes. "In fact, if the company had made such a political popular move, I'm certain Apple PR would have found a more effective way to spread the word than with a little label on the back of an iMac."

After doing a little research, CNN Money surmised that the only Apple devices receiving the "Assembled in USA" sticker are the made-to-order units -- those that require custom parts, like an extra-high-capacity hard drive, before they're finally assembled. But he also mentions that the reader in question claims his iMac was an off-the-shelf, entry-level model, not a custom-ordered unit.

On Monday ABC News followed up with a report that additional customers have come forward with claims that their new iMacs are assembled here in the States, too. The report includes a testimony from iFixit.com, which claims that it bought a new iMac from an Apple Store with the "Assembled in USA" label.

"It's the first product from Apple in quite a long while that says 'Assembled in the United States'," Miroslav Djuric, iFixit's chief information architect, told ABC News. His claim matches similar ones made by other readers who wrote in to additional websites like 9to5Mac, reporting that their American-assembled iMac was off-the-shelf, not a customized unit.

"For the 'assembly' claim to be valid, the product's last 'substantial transformation' also should have occurred in the U.S.," states the Federal Trade Commission. "That's why a 'screwdriver' assembly in the U.S. of foreign components into a final product at the end of the manufacturing process doesn't usually qualify for the 'Assembled in USA' claim."

Back in May, Apple CEO Tim Cook said that we wanted to offer a product that's completely assembled here in the States. Currently only a few components are made locally including the Gorilla Glass screen from Corning. Even Lenovo is bringing work back to the States by assembling and making hardware for some of its ThinkPad laptops and desktops in Whitsett, North Carolina. Foxconn is reportedly even considering U.S.-based factories.

Many reports point out that Apple would seemingly be more vocal about manufacturing products in the United States given the current level of jobless Americans (aka it would be good PR given all the drama surrounding Foxconn). So far, the general consensus is that nothing is any different than past "Assembled in USA" Mac sightings. Still, the multiple reports within the last several days can't be a mere coincidence.

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Top Comments
  • 12 Hide
    amdfangirl , December 4, 2012 3:09 PM
    Tell me again when it says:

    "Assembled entirely out of American parts"

    That will be a story! ;) 
  • 10 Hide
    atminside , December 4, 2012 2:25 PM
    Wow that's good news. More jobs here the better.
  • 10 Hide
    the1kingbob , December 4, 2012 2:46 PM
    Extra-high-capacity hard drive lol...

    Either way, I don't care much for macs but I would love to see them start shipping their production lines back to the state.
Other Comments
  • 10 Hide
    atminside , December 4, 2012 2:25 PM
    Wow that's good news. More jobs here the better.
  • 5 Hide
    zzz_b , December 4, 2012 2:29 PM
    ... or may not ...
  • 6 Hide
    bak0n , December 4, 2012 2:39 PM
    Don't worry, they'll add $200.00 to the price of each for it.
  • 10 Hide
    the1kingbob , December 4, 2012 2:46 PM
    Extra-high-capacity hard drive lol...

    Either way, I don't care much for macs but I would love to see them start shipping their production lines back to the state.
  • 2 Hide
    Anonymous , December 4, 2012 2:48 PM
    Let's assume for sake of argument that American workers are more expensive than their Asian counter-parts. Holding quality equal, will consumers pay a higher price for the "Made in USA" label?
  • 5 Hide
    dauntekong , December 4, 2012 2:50 PM
    Some New Apple iMacs May Be Assembled in the USA

    That's just a "MAY" ok... "MAY" not may be, but "MAY"
  • 4 Hide
    sliem , December 4, 2012 2:53 PM
    Yes, I may learn french... may.
  • 12 Hide
    amdfangirl , December 4, 2012 3:09 PM
    Tell me again when it says:

    "Assembled entirely out of American parts"

    That will be a story! ;) 
  • 4 Hide
    Osmin , December 4, 2012 4:41 PM
    The problem is not if consumers will pay more for an American made product, the problem is that America allows foreign labor to compete freely with American labor. This is happening all over the world with the concept of the Global Economy. Consumers are now accustomed to buy all their products, made with foreign workers, and then complain about their own economy. The more money the consumers spend, the faster their money leaves their country. Foreign workers do not pay taxes to your country, that help bring down the deficit and pay for essential services, and foreign workers take away millions of jobs that are desperately needed now in your own country. When you buy a foreign made product, you are at best lowering your future earnings or buying your future unemployment. America has fake unemployment numbers to hide the millions of jobs lost in the past several decades. Most political party nominees around the world are selected by big business that contribute to their campaign funds and could care less about creating jobs for their citizens. In America, neither the Democrats nor the Republicans will take the matter seriously since their loyalty lies to the big donors that are happy with the Global Economy. Why build a $150+ Nike shoe in America for $29 when you can make it in China for $19? Why build the new San Francisco Bay Bridge with $20+ per hour American workers when you can ship Chinese workers and pay them 75 cents per hour. This is reality, not only consumers like to save a buck, but businesses love to save even more.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , December 4, 2012 7:34 PM
    almost makes me want to work for a foreign company (updates resume)
  • 1 Hide
    john15v16 , December 4, 2012 7:35 PM
    This is good apple news. +1 @Kevin for posting actual news.
  • 2 Hide
    SoiledBottom , December 4, 2012 8:08 PM
    I may start and anti suicide nets business here in the USA
  • 0 Hide
    jupiter optimus maximus , December 4, 2012 8:36 PM
    Where is this assembly in the US? Is it foxcomm owned? I'm curious to know.
  • 1 Hide
    spasmolytic46 , December 4, 2012 8:37 PM
    It is a damn shame, that where it is assembled is random. I have customers who would specifically buy them if I could guarantee they got ones assembled in the U.S.
  • 1 Hide
    nforce4max , December 4, 2012 9:53 PM
    amdfangirlTell me again when it says:"Assembled entirely out of American parts"That will be a story!


    Would be nice if our cars and trucks didn't rely on imported parts.
  • 0 Hide
    Shin-san , December 4, 2012 10:10 PM
    Wish I knew. I might have put off buying a mac mini and got an iMac
  • -2 Hide
    blurr91 , December 4, 2012 11:45 PM
    Trade is a good thing. It doesn't matter where things are made. What matters is we get the highest quality goods for the lowest amount of resources.
  • 1 Hide
    Skeete_UK , December 5, 2012 12:54 AM
    Apple are currently being investigated as simply plugging stuff together does not constitute Assembly.

    "As an example of an invalid use of "Assembled in USA", the FTC cites a computer with all of its major components being made outside the US, then "put together in a simple 'screwdriver' operation in the U.S." That computer, the FTC rules, "must be marked with a foreign country of origin." Why? Because "An 'Assembled in U.S.' claim without further qualification is deceptive."
  • 0 Hide
    Skeete_UK , December 5, 2012 12:56 AM
    Apple are currently being investigated by the FTC as this assembled in the US label is misleading. See Quote below from theRegister.

    "As an example of an invalid use of "Assembled in USA", the FTC cites a computer with all of its major components being made outside the US, then "put together in a simple 'screwdriver' operation in the U.S." That computer, the FTC rules, "must be marked with a foreign country of origin." Why? Because "An 'Assembled in U.S.' claim without further qualification is deceptive."
  • 0 Hide
    digiex , December 5, 2012 1:53 AM
    "Some", OK, US citizens take note, You should also buy some iMacs.
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