Web

Foxconn Promises 20% Wage Hike Following Suicides

foxconn biulding lcd factory in wisconsin

Hon Hai, the Taiwanese parent company of Foxconn, is promising a 20 percent raise to its 420,000 employees following a string of worker suicides that have brought increased scrutiny to the factory, from both the media and the American companies like HP, Dell and Apple, all of whom have products manufactured by Foxconn.

The wage hike will raise the pay from $131 to $157 a month, although it does not address the work conditions that many describe as “sweatshop-like”. HP, Nintendo, Apple and Dell all have products made by Foxconn, and all have vowed to investigate the factory conditions.

A spokesman for Hon Hai claims that the pay raise has nothing to do with the suicides, and that the wage increase had been scheduled for some time. It is unclear when the raise will take effect. Labor costs account for just 2 percent of Hon Hai’s operating costs.

“It may help the suicide situation, because we workers just need money and the financial pressure on us is great,” a Foxconn employee told MSNBC “Every little bit helps.”

The announcement of a raise follows the news that Foxconn employees were being required to sign a form that included a clause stating that the company would no longer pay anything more than the legal minimum for injuries sustained while not at work. Foxconn was rumored to be offering 100,000 yuan, or roughly $14,650 to compensate the families of those that committed suicide, something that may have encouraged some of the suicides.

So far this year, 10 employees of Foxconn have committed suicide. An 11th death was reported yesterday after a worker slit his wrists, but the man survived after receiving medical attention. At least two others have also attempted suicide but survived, and the number of unreported attempts may be higher.

Home Theater

Apple Music encourages subscribers to give friends a free 1-month pass

It's no secret that Apple has its sights set squarely on Spotify's enviable subscriber count, but how will Apple Music grow? By using existing customers to recruit new members by letting them send friends a one-month free pass.
Home Theater

The best movies on Netflix in December, from 'Buster Scruggs’ to 'Roma'

Save yourself from hours wasted scrolling through Netflix's massive library by checking out our picks for the streamer's best movies available right now, whether you're into explosive action, witty humor, or anything else.
Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix, from 'Haunting of Hill House’ to ‘Norsemen’

Looking for a new show to binge? Lucky for you, we've curated a list of the best shows on Netflix, whether you're a fan of outlandish anime, dramatic period pieces, or shows that leave you questioning what lies beyond.
Smart Home

Amazon’s Whole Foods raises hundreds of prices, from ice cream to soap

Whole Foods Market raised prices on hundreds of items, citing higher ingredient, packaging, and transportation costs. When Amazon bought Whole Foods, the promise of lower prices attracted customers; that glow may diminish with price bumps.
Computing

Russia will ‘unplug’ from the internet as part of a cyber-defense test

Authorities across Russia are planning on unplugging the country from the global internet as part of a test of its cyber defenses. The disconnection will briefly keep all internet traffic inside the country.
Gaming

These are the coolest games you can play on your Google Chrome browser right now

Not only is Google Chrome a fantastic web browser, it's also a versatile gaming platform that you can access from just about anywhere. Here are a few of our favorite titles for the platform.
Mobile

Is the 5G spectrum harmful to our health? Experts say, 'Don't freak out'

There's plenty of consumer anxiety about radiofrequency (RF) radiation, specifically around millimeter waves (mmWave) used on 5G networks, but is it based in reality? We asked the FDA to give us its official view on the subject.
Web

Gmail adds lots of new functionality to its right-click menu

Right-click on an email in Gmail and the list of actions is pretty limited. That's about to change, though, as Google has just announced it's expanding the list of options to make its email client that little bit more useful.
Computing

Tired of paying a monthly fee for Word? The best Microsoft Office alternatives

Looking for a competent word processor that isn't Microsoft Word? Thankfully, the best alternatives to Microsoft Office offer robust features, expansive compatibility, and an all-too-familiar aesthetic. Here are our favorites.
Computing

File Transfer Protocol explained: What FTP is and what it does

FTP stands for "File Transfer Protocol," and it's used to transfer files online. Most internet users don't need it, but web developers use it constantly. Here's what FTP is, how it works, and how you can get started using it.
Computing

Make a GIF of your favorite YouTube video with these great tools

Making a GIF from a YouTube video is easier today than ever, but choosing the right tool for the job isn't always so simple. In this guide, we'll teach you how to make a GIF from a YouTube video with our two favorite online tools.
Computing

Lose the key for your favorite software? These handy tools can find it for you

Missing product keys getting you down? We've chosen some of the best software license and product key finders in existence, so you can locate and document your precious keys on your Windows or MacOS machine.
Computing

From beautiful to downright weird, check out these great dual-monitor wallpapers

Multitasking with two monitors doesn't necessarily mean you need to split your screens with two separate wallpapers. From beautiful to downright weird, here are our top sites for finding the best dual-monitor wallpapers for you.
Social Media

Instagram test reveals direct messages may be coming to browsers

Instagram for the web has always been a minimalist affair compared to the feature-rich smartphone app, but in the last few years that's started to change. The latest news is that Instagram is considering adding direct messages.