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© victor-habbick-dreamstime.com Electronics Production | June 27, 2013

Foxconn marches on - with robots

Remember the reports about Foxconn deploying robots to replace factory workers? Well, 20'000 of them are now in use.
The Taiwan-based EMS-giant is set to create, what can only be described as a legion of robots, in order to counter balance the rising labour costs. While robotic machines are far from new within the electronics industry, human workers are still the preferred choice when it comes to smaller consumer electronics, for example, mobile phones.

At the company's annual shareholder's meeting in Taipei, CEO Terry Gou stated that: as workers' wages in China are rising, and so the company's research in robots and automation has to catch up. Adding that the company has over one million workers and that in the future, the company will add one million robotic workers. Furthermore, he said, human workers would than be technicians and engineers, according to a report in Computerworld.

As of now, Foxconn has spent some three years researching and developing the robots (made specific for the assembly of electronics such as mobile phones). However, it will be some time before they are fully developed.

However, Rome was not built in a day. This is a long-term goal for the company and before we can talk about a robotic take-over of the industry, the tools need to be fully developed. But still, the company has 20'000 robotic tools already in use in its facilities.

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