A Chinese language newspaper is reporting that Apple
wasn't the least bit happy with the appearance and/or functionality of a recent batch of iPhone devices manufactured by Foxconn
, and so it rejected the order. Based on a supposed conversation it had with several Foxconn insiders who asked not be named, China Business
reports at least 5 million iPhones were returned, and perhaps as many as 8 million.
According to China Business
(via Google Translate), it costs Foxconn around $200 to produce each iPhone. That means Foxconn will have to swallow as much as $1.6 billion if the number of returned iPhones is closer to 8 million than 5 million. Even on the lower end of the scale, Foxconn's looking at a hit of no less than $1 billion.
It's not clear which model iPhone Apple was unhappy with, though this isn't the first time Foxconn has had issues. Foxconn has repeatedly stated
that Apple's iPhone 5
model is difficult to produce, going so far as to say it's a defective design after users complained of there being scratches and chips
on brand new iPhone 5 devices right out of the box.
Unfortunately for Foxconn, the timing couldn't be worse. Amid a slowdown in Apple product sales, of which Foxconn is heavily invested in, the manufacture saw its Q1 revenue plummet 19 percent