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Foxconn admits error with bonus payments after protests at largest iPhone factory

iPhone 14 Camera

A day after hundreds of workers of the largest iPhone factory in Zhengzhou, China, protested about lack of payments, insufficient food, and risk of getting COVID-19, Foxconn admitted a “technical error” on worker bonuses, and it’s now offering $1,400 payouts for those planning to leave.

The factory, which employs over 200,00 workers and is estimated to make about 60% of the worldwide iPhone production, had a tough November as a lockdown in the plant interrupted the new iPhone 14 manufacturing process.

At the beginning of the month, Foxconn offered higher bonuses for those who would work extra hours and sleep in the plant to ensure Foxconn would be able to deliver Apple the new iPhone models.

But after weeks of working, some employees didn’t receive the promised bonuses, and they also highlighted other issues they were having at the factory, as previously reported by BGR.

Nikkei Asia says Foxconn is offering workers around $1,400 to leave the Zhengzhou plant as it still faces labor shortages amid a COVID-19 outbreak.

The offers to some recently recruited workers came as authorities in Zhengzhou prepared to impose a five-day lockdown of the city from the end of Thursday in a bid to curb the spread of COVID-19.

(…) Foxconn told all employees Wednesday night, in a text message seen by Nikkei, that the company would accommodate those who “hoped to resign” and pay them 10,000 yuan each, including salary, quarantine fees and travel costs to return home, in an effort to calm the situation.

About the promised bonus, Foxconn said that it was delayed due to “a technical error” that occurred during the onboarding process.

“We fully understand the concerns of some newly recruited employees in the Zhengzhou Park about possible changes in the subsidy policy… We apologize for an input error in the computer system and guarantee that the actual pay is the same as agreed and [on] the official recruitment posters,” the statement said.

While the situation is still in development, BGR will report once we learn how the new lockdown will affect Foxconn and Apple and whether the manufacturer is paying its workers.

José is a Tech News Reporter at BGR. He has previously covered Apple and iPhone news for 9to5Mac, and was a producer and web editor for Latin American broadcaster TV Globo. He is based out of Brazil.