Cook and Trump make eyes as crunch time looms for Apple

Ideas

Cook and Trump make eyes as crunch time looms for Apple

With the president pushing for US production, the tech titan might be forced to turn its back on China

James Titcomb

Apple’s Mac Pro, a supercharged high-end computer designed for professional filmmakers and graphics designers, is not one of the tech giant’s more important products. It costs more than R90,000 for the most powerful model, and is seen within Apple as an engineering hobby rather than key to its bottom line. But in recent years the computer has carried a significance that its better selling gadgets have not.

Stamped on the underside of the computer are the words “Assembled in the USA”. Since 2013, the Mac Pro has been put together at a factory in Texas, making it unique among Apple’s major products. “We’ve been working for years on doing more and more in the United States,” Tim Cook, Apple’s chief, said at the time.

That changed in 2019. In June, Apple unveiled a new and more powerful Mac Pro. Amid a swirling US trade war with China and an unpredictable president, Apple moved production of the new computer to China, where it manufactures the vast majority of its other products...

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