updated 10:35 pm EDT, Mon October 24, 2011
Pegatron plans to solve pollution at iPhone plants
Apple's frequent iPhone supplier Pegatron is under Chinese government scrutiny for pollution, the company mentioned on Monday. Similar to the problems faced by Catcher, environmental studies mentioned by Digitimes had Pegatron accused of excess pollution, such as waste gas or simply noise pollution. Two of its subsidaries have also been fined for releasing polluted water into the public stream.
To tackle the problem, Pegatron has pledged several fixes. It planned a plant upgrade to cut back on gas and noise, while the two other divisions were already fixing their production lines to cut back on the hazardous water.
More answers are expected about pollution at an investor conference starting this Thursday, where the company will also discuss the financial impact of its iPhone 4S production for late 2011 and 2012. Conflicting with recent claims, Digitimes claimed it was making 10 million iPhone 4S units through tis long-term production deal, not 15 from its most recent report. Whatever the amount, the gross margin on these might be lower than planned and could see Pegatron take a loss in 2011 when combined with other results.
In a consolation to Apple, however, Pegatron may also be reflecting trouble for its one-time owner ASUS' main tablet, the Eee Pad Transformer. Having originally forecast 800,000 tablets for the quarter, it's blaming the Amazon Kindle Fire for lowered production to as low as 600,000 units.
The claim is odd given that Quanta makes the Kindle Fire, not Pegatron, and that the two tablets don't really compete with each other. It would, however, fit a pattern of Android tablet makers having to lower production numbers as presumptions that Android tablets would take down the iPad haven't panned out as planned. Motorola in its last quarter shipped just 440,000 Xooms and may not get much more in its results this week, and normally quick to celebrate Samsung has said nothing of how well the Galaxy Tab 10.1 has sold.
Apple shipped over 11.1 million iPads in the summer and is believed to have sold every tablet it made outside of necessary inventory.