Is the Foxconn Hiring Freeze Linked to Apple?

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Foxconn is China’s largest private sector employer and the biggest assembler of Apple products. It operates iPhone and iPad production lines in Shenzhen, which is also the company’s largest plant with more than 200,000 workers. The facility at Zhengzhou, the second largest plant with about 200,000 workers, also makes iPhones. The Taiyuan factory, with 79,000 workers, makes iPhone parts, while the facility at Chengdu makes the iPad.

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Several analysts have predicted in recent days that Apple may be preparing to upgrade its smartphone line with a low-cost model, a bigger-screen model, and a third version that will be a minor upgrade to the iPhone 5.

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