Foxconn overworking interns ahead of Sony Playstation 4 launch

Foxconn, a name nearly synonymous with scandal and dubious work practices, is in the middle of another controversy surrounding its manufacturing process. This time Apple’s iPhones have nothing to do with it, but another super popular device does: Sony’s Playstation 4.

It seems like China’s biggest private employer is at it again, recruiting students in “internships” where they work on the assembly lines for the upcoming Playstation 4. While this in itself doesn't sound too bad, the fact that these students work night shifts with long overtime for entry-level wage makes things seems worse. Add the fact that students aren't so much recruited as obliged to work if they want to graduate and this turns into a classic controversy.

With Sony’s upcoming PS4 console expected to sell in the millions the Chinese manufacturer is hard at work trying to make sure it creates enough units. The company also claims to be dealing with a worker shortage across the country, hence the outreach to the students. As for the policies that are being violated, the company claims it’s cracking down on them and that students are free to leave at any time.

Source: Quartz | Image via Gizmodo

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I cannot believe Sony is demanding those poor people to work so much.

I will bet Microsoft is using U.S. labor to make it's XBONE device... NOT!

NeoPogo said,
I cannot believe Sony is demanding those poor people to work so much.

I will bet Microsoft is using U.S. labor to make it's XBONE device... NOT!

I can't believe Sony isn't monitoring Foxconn and is allowing this to happen... and hopefully they were unaware and not endorsing it, and are coming up with a plan to ensure it doesn't happen again.

I hope Microsoft is monitoring Foxconn much more closely than Sony apparently is. That might be the case because no stories like this have come out about them (and if they had a violation on their hands, you can be sure it would be plastered everywhere), and they have seen how things like this have hurt Apple and now Sony.

So I guess Xbox One is assembled by Foxconn's Professional Assemblers for $1.47 an hour, while the PS4 is assembled by interns for 64 cents an hour? That would explain another reason why Xbox One costs more.

So you think that somehow Sony is asking Foxconn to use interns to build their hardware?

Sony has contract with FoxConn.
Microsoft has contract with FoxConn.

do you see a difference here?

The fact that Sony needs to increase the production rate, because of their success might lead Foxconn in acquiring more work force... but

The news should be about Foxconn and not about one of the companies that do business with them.

Zaic said,
So you think that somehow Sony is asking Foxconn to use interns to build their hardware?

Sony has contract with FoxConn.
Microsoft has contract with FoxConn.

do you see a difference here?

The fact that Sony needs to increase the production rate, because of their success might lead Foxconn in acquiring more work force... but

The news should be about Foxconn and not about one of the companies that do business with them.

Nobody is blaming Sony for this. It's Foxconn's deal. It's not the first time they've done shady things. It won't be the last, and it'd be nice if all companies stopped givin them contracts, but that's not likely to happen. The article is calling out only Sony because the interns who came out about this stated they were building the PS4, not the Xbox One or anything else. No part of this article is blaming Sony for anything - they're just part of the story because it was their product being built.

ok Neowin, this is not funny - first of all this is old news and secondly your precious Microsoft also works with Foxconn

Zaic said,
ok Neowin, this is not funny - first of all this is old news and secondly your precious Microsoft also works with Foxconn

This news broke yesterday, and there haven't been any reports on the Xbox side of things.

Zaic said,
ok Neowin, this is not funny - first of all this is old news and secondly your precious Microsoft also works with Foxconn

Not everything needs to be about Microsoft. I would love to see the reaction of people if Ms was found in a similar thing sheesh.

Edited by StandingInAlley, Oct 11 2013, 11:13am :

Here's the list of manufacturing companies and the Xbox 1 parts they are currently fulfilling orders for:

Asia Optical - sensing lenses
Delat Electronics - power supply
Foxconn Electronics - assembly
Foxlink - connectors
Jentech Precision Industrial - cooling modules
Lite-On Technology - optical disc drive
Newmax - sensing lenses

So whats the point of pinpointing PS4? as the next room in Foxconn is assembling xbox1?

What's the point of pinpointing the PS4? the interns are building the damn thing

And I quote "recruiting students in “internships” where they work on the assembly lines for the upcoming Playstation 4"

There's a reason for pinpointing a PS4. Now show me an allegation that the FCon assembly house for M$'s XBO is abusing "interns" and I'll pull out my sad violin and play them a song.

Don't get me wrong, FCon are the bad news not their contractors. But ask and you shall receive

StandingInAlley said,

Yes except how do you know that Microsoft hasn't made sure that there are proper requirements and working conditions which Foxconn needs to meet for manufacturing their products? Apple makes sure that Foxconn follows it.


And how often happens that they don't follow those 'guidelines'... several times a year?
first time I hear of Sony having this and who says they don't have guidelines.

You can have as many checks and balances as you'd like, but if they all worked the way they were supposed to, things like this wouldn't be happening. Hell, governments alone are a prime example of how great ideas can be setback by those who choose to ignore the rules. Scandals and corruption galore.

(sorry, I'm in a ranty mood heh)

Seriously. This isn't the company's fault. Why do you think Apple's trying to manufacture their own devices within this country?

Mr.XXIV said,
Seriously. This isn't the company's fault. Why do you think Apple's trying to manufacture their own devices within this country?

For PR spin.

Mr.XXIV said,
Seriously. This isn't the company's fault. Why do you think Apple's trying to manufacture their own devices within this country?

I didn't mention about fault did I? But this is what Sony or any company for that matter should do in future - before giving such a massive contract, they can lay down certain guidelines and principles which is what Apple does or was forced to do. These massive corporations are in a position to bargain. Its a responsibility and nothing else. Perhaps you should take some time and understand why Apple did the same thing. Through their contract, they can force Foxconn which clearly only cares about making massive profits and little or nothing about people.

nitins60 said,
Stop outsourcing to Foxconn. Get somebody else. It's looking like complete monopolistic.

Foxconn does not have a monopoly. They have about 50% share of the EMS (Electronics Manufacturing Services) market.