According to a Japanese language blog, “reliable sources” have indicated that Foxconn is going to make the iPad Mini not at one of their many factories in China, but at a new factory complex which has just opened in Brazil. Production is supposed to start in September.
The source also claims to have seen the new iPad Mini in person, and says that it is the same height as the Nexus 7 and slightly wider, but also thinner than most Android tablets.
As for the iPad Mini rumor, I think it’s rather off the wall but I can see why Apple might go for it. Think for a moment about all the many stories about the working conditions in factories making Apple products. There were a lot of them, and even though Apple’s working conditions weren’t any worse than the average Chinese factory Apple still got a lot of bad press (it is easy and fun to bash Apple, I know).
Moving the production to the new factory complex in Brazil would give Apple an opportunity to show that they’ve improved the working conditions. In fact, Apple’s already getting some good press for the new factory:
Labor activists point to Foxconn’s record in Brazil to show that it and Apple can make products under lawful conditions while paying workers decent wages when the local environment requires it. And they believe that Apple and Foxconn have been taking advantage of Chinese workers simply because they believe they can get away with it.
I can picture Tim Cook getting up on stage and talking about the new factory, can’t you?