Apple will start manufacturing in the US, but those goods aren’t for us

Donald Trump was keen to bring manufacturing back to the US, and Apple was a particular target of his. It now looks like part of his plan may have been inadvertently realised.

A notice published by the Federal Register reveals that Apple has applied for “greater authority to produce certain components for consumer electronics” in a Foreign-Trade Zone located in Mesa, Arizona (and if you’re curious, it’s a 100 miles from Black Mesa).

The notice further goes on to describe the components that Apple intends to produce at the Mesa facility include, among other things, server rack rails, servers, solid state drives, and more.

Business Insider, which first reported on the filing, has clarified that Apple is indeed seeking to manufacture servers and related data centre equipment at the facility. Assembly in America is more expensive for Apple, especially as labour cost is much higher, but as Business Insider points out, this equipment is for Apple’s internal operations rather than consumer goods.

Apple reportedly has data centres in Oregon and North Carolina. Apple intends to “build and configure” data servers at the facility and ship them to its own data centres.

The Business Insider report explains Apple’s plans at length, suffice to say that the Mesa facility is Apple’s “global command centre” for all things iCloud and iTunes. The data centre was originally a manufacturing facility, but was later repurposed as a data centre.

The request to manufacture/assemble server hardware in-house speaks of Apple’s plans to make its data-centres self-sufficient.

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