updated 07:35 am EST, Fri January 21, 2011
iPhone 5 using more Taiwanese parts
Apple's plans for the iPhone 5 may see it move a large number of its parts from Japan to Taiwan, a . A Foxconn parts wing, Foxconn Electronics, as well as Foxlink, Gold Circuit Electronics and Epistar are all new supplying parts such as the iconic white earphones, the headphone jacks, boards and LED lights where Japanese suppliers like Foster. The American was said by the Economic Daily News to be looking for "more cost-effective sources" after a strong Japanese yen made parts more expensive.
One of the obstacles preventing such a switch in the past may have been patent rights for Taiwanese firms. Epistar recently struck a deal with Toyoda Gosei that would give it access to the Japanese company's patents.
The measures might be necessary for the next iPhone. Apple has already had to raise costs for the iPhone 4 and may have other costs that could drive the prices upwards. The rumored dual-mode Qualcomm cellular chipset could increase the manufacturing costs by itself. Apple's possible use of a dual-core processor and possible storage upgrades could trigger similar price hikes.