Foxconn to Double Worker’s Wages; Could Have Global Implications

The scrutiny continues to mount at Foxconn, causing the manufacturer to raise its wages for the third time in 10 days. The Taiwanese corporation Hon Hai, owners of the embattled Foxconn production plant that has seen 10 suicides (5 in May alone), and multiple attempts this year, has announced that it will raise wages to nearly double the current pay. On average, that translates to $291 per month, an increase from $131. Floor managers and supervisors will see an increase from 1,200 yen to 2,000 yen, or roughly $175 a month to $292, according to a report from the Wall Street Journal.foxconn to double workers wages motherboard2 And the repercussions could be felt around the world.

The recent string of suicides have focused media attention on Foxconn, the world’s largest contract manufacturer of electronics. Foxconn currently produces material for several American electronics makers, including Apple, HP, and Dell, all of whom have claimed that they are investigating working conditions following the ninth death at the plant that Chinese Labor groups have labeled as a “sweatshop”.

Hon Hai then announced that it would be raising wages 20 percent, but claimed that it was a scheduled, and long planned raise, and not a result of the deaths. A tenth suicide soon followed, prompting the Chinese government to intercede and tell Hon Hai to stop the suicides, going so far as to recommend better unions. Soon after, another employee died, this time as a result from exhaustion after allegedly working a 34-hour shift, something the employee’s widow claimed was standard.

The civil rights watchdog group China Labor Watch points out that the salary boost will be nice, but it does it would only help workers to accept the working conditions, rather than doing anything to improve them.

“The company remains a typical sweatshop, as are all factories that overlook the basic needs of their workers for the sake of profit,” the labor advocates said in a statement.

The move to increase wages comes with complications. Bloomberg is reporting that the announcement immediately caused Hon Hai stocks to fall 5.6 percent in Taiwan, its biggest drop in over a year, while the stock in Hong Kong fell 5.5 percent. There is also the question of whether or not the wage increase will simply cut into Hon Hai’s profits, or be passed on, which would significantly increase the costs of electronic around the world.

The move by Foxconn might also have significant implications for the Chinese economy, which would cause global ripples. Salaries across China are extremely low by US standards. If the Foxconn salary increase is seen as a success, it might force other companies in China to follow suit, which would lead to a global price shift as manufacturers either lower their profit margins, or increase their costs. The world-wide implications might be profound, to say the least.


Huawei has a bold Plan B should tensions affect its software relationships

Huawei has its own software for smartphones and computers prepared, should its relationship with Google and Microsoft be adversely affected by ongoing tensions between it and the U.S..
Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix right now (March 2019)

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.
Movies & TV

The best movies on Netflix in March, 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.

Google may cancel future laptops, tablets as it makes cuts to hardware team

Google could be cutting back on hardware. According to a report from Business Insider, the company is reassigning dozens of employees in its laptop and tablet division as part of "roadmap cutbacks."
Social Media

Yep, it’s not just you. Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp are down for many

Facebook's family of apps has been suffering issues for much of the day. Instagram, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Facebook itself have been out of action for users around the world, with the company scrambling to sort it out.

Privacy-focused DuckDuckGo added to Chrome as a default search option

DuckDuckGo is now listed as a default search option on Google’s popular Chrome browser. The privacy-focused search engine was added this week as part of the browser's latest update.

Hey Google, why did you kill off Allo, your best messaging app in years?

Allo, Google's messaging app, has shut down. I convinced my closest friends and family to switch to the app two-and-a-half years ago when it debuted, and we've been using it since. With its death, I'm feeling pain and sadness.

Netgear’s new Nighthawk Pro Gaming router keeps you connected at a nice price

Netgear's latest router expands its Nighthawk range with a $200 entry. It's still fast and helps reduce lag in gaming, but it does it at the lowest price of a Nighthawk Pro Gaming router yet.
Social Media

Facebook explains its worst outage as 3 million users head to Telegram

Facebook, if you didn't already know it, suffered a bit of an issue on Wednesday, March 13. An issue that took down not only its social networking site, but also Instagram, WhatsApp, and Messenger. On Thursday it offered an explanation.

How to easily record your laptop screen with apps you already have

Learning how to record your computer screen shouldn't be a challenge. Lucky for you, our comprehensive guide lays out how to do so using a host of methods, including both free and premium utilities, in both MacOS and Windows 10.

Here's how to download a YouTube video to watch offline later

Learning how to download YouTube videos is easier than you might think. There are tools you can use both online and offline. This step-by-step guide will instruct you on how to use them.
Social Media

Your Google+ public content will remain viewable on the web, if you want it to

Google's failed social network — Google+ — will soon be wiped from the internet, but there's a team of volunteers working right now to save its public content for the Internet Archive.

There’s more space on MySpace after ‘accidental’ wipe of 50 million songs

MySpace is no longer a safe refuge for music and media produced in the 2000s. It said that almost any artistic content uploaded to the site between 2003 and 2015 may have been lost as part of a server migration last year.

Dodge the cryptojackers with the best torrent clients available today

Looking for the best torrent clients to help you share all of that wonderful legal content you own? Here's a list of our favorite torrent clients, all packed with great features while dodging malware and adverts.