Foxconn is once again back in the news, with their often candid CEO making headlines over references to the iPhone 5.
According to Apple Insider, “Chief Executive Officer Terry Gou of Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., otherwise known as Apple device manufacturer Foxconn, told customers on Monday to disregard Samsung’s recently-released Galaxy S III smartphone and wait for the upcoming iPhone 5 instead.”
Apparently, the comment was not the central focus of Gou as he made his speech. Rather, his speech was more about outlining Foxconn’s desire to usurp Samsung as a component supplier. He exact (translated) words: “the new model will put Samsung’s Galaxy III to shame.”
And he should know, right?
Now that the WWDC has come and gone, and we still have yet to get the iPhone 5, it would appear that October will be the announcement month for the sixth generation iPhone — that could be as many as four months away. One of my arguments for why I believed the iPhone 5 could be announced in June was based on the chatter we were hearing out of Foxconn in the spring, as well as the appearance of rumored iPhone 5 parts. If they turn out to be the real deal, then the fact that we are seeing them now would indicate a sooner rather than later iPhone 5 release.
To me, this news is similar: Foxconn represents the end of the supply chain. They do the assembly. Is it fair to say that if Terry Gou has been made that privy to the iPhone 5′s design, that it is closer to mass production than we think? My feeling is that Gou has had more interaction with the new iPhone than simply reading its specs in a sensitive document. What are the chances that he has seen it in person, complete with its new form factor? What are the chances that he has actually used it?
He obviously has had enough interaction with the iPhone 5 to tout its supremacy over its primary competing smartphone — and an impressive smartphone at that. Granted, Gou might have been just dealing in hyperbole here — but we cannot overlook the comment. It gives us some post-WWDC insight into how far along the iPhone 5 is in production, and when it could be released.
By Michael Nace
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