Apple continues to bet on Vietnam to reduce its dependence on China. Nikkei Asia We learned today that two Apple suppliers (Luxshare and Foxconn) have started testing Apple Watch production in northern Vietnam. This would be the first time an Apple Watch has been made outside of China.
Apple is seeking to distance itself from the Middle Kingdom for several reasons. The Sino-American tensions of course, but also the particularly strict Chinese management of the COVID which could have caused problems on the production lines.
Seeing Apple turn to Vietnam is hardly surprising: part of the manufacturing of the AirPods Pro, AirPods Max and HomePod mini has been entrusted to Vietnamese factories, just like that of certain iPads. The assembly of the Apple Watch requires great technological know-how, because the (many) components of the device must fit in a small box. Taking up such a challenge would be a great victory for the country and would allow it to shine on a technical level.
On the Mac side, Cupertino has reportedly requested that a test line be deployed in Vietnam for MacBook production. The country is not completely foreign to Apple computers: Foxconn built chains for MacBooks at its factory in Bac Giang province in northeastern Vietnam in early 2021. However, part of it was closed due to of COVID and information on possible “made-in-Vietnam” MacBooks remain unclear.