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Foxconn to speed up ‘robot army’ deployment; 20,000 robots already in its factories

Michael Kan
ITworld.com [1]
June 28, 2013

Manufacturing giant Foxconn Technology Group is on track with its goal to a create a “million robot army”, and already has 20,000 robotic machines in its factories, said the company’s CEO Terry Gou on Wednesday.

Workers’ wages in China are rising, and so the company’s research in robots and automation has to catch up, Gou said, while speaking at the company’s annual shareholder’s meeting in Taipei. “We have over 1 million workers. In the future we will add 1 million robotic workers,” he said. “Our [human] workers will then become technicians and engineers.”

Foxconn is the world’s largest contract electronics maker and counts Apple, Microsoft and Sony as some of its clients. Many of its largest factories are in China, where the company employs 1.2 million people, but risingĀ are threatening to reduce company profits.

To offset labor costs and improve its manufacturing, Foxconn has already spent three years onĀ developing robots [2], Gou said. These machines are specifically developed to assemble electronics such as mobile phones, but it will take some time for Foxconn to fully develop the technology, he added.

Full story here. [1]