Apple, another decisive step in Vietnam


Global technological giants are increasingly present in and around Hanoi

Article by Tommaso Magrini

Vietnam is preparing for a crucial development in its economic and technological ambitions. Apple is, in fact, allocating resources for iPad product development to the Southeast Asian country for the first time, an important step toward strengthening the Southeast Asian country’s position as an alternative manufacturing hub outside China. Apple is collaborating with China’s BYD, a leading iPad assembler, to move resources to Vietnam for new product introductions. This is the first time this happens for such a major Apple device. Engineering verification for trial production of an iPad model will begin in the middle of February next year, says Nikkei Asia. The model will be available in the second half of next year. BYD was also the first supplier to Apple to help the U.S. tech giant move iPad assembly to Vietnam for the first time in 2022. The move requires substantial resources both for the tech company and its suppliers, such as engineers and investment in lab equipment to test new features and functions. Most of Apple’s new product introduction is done in China, in collaboration with Cupertino engineers, to take advantage of the country’s decades of experience in hardware production. But the geopolitical uncertainties are forcing the company to rethink this approach. Apple also has plans to send some iPhone trials to India. Vietnam has emerged as Apple’s most important technology manufacturing hub outside of China. The Cupertino-based tech giant has asked suppliers to build new manufacturing capacity for almost all of its products except for iPhone, from AirPods to MacBooks, Apple Watch to iPads. Apple will continue to work closely with Chinese suppliers in its supply chain shift, but Vietnam is becoming increasingly central.

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