Apple will build a new 700-employee manufacturing facility in Mesa, Ariz. to make components for various Apple products, according to
a press release issued by the Governor of Arizona.
All told, the plant will create more than 2,000 jobs in engineering, manufacturing, and construction, Apple said in a statement to Pocket-Lint.
Apple will make something called “sapphire glass” there, which is an extremely scratch-resistant type of glass, according to a press release issued by GT Advanced Technology, the maker of “sapphire glass.” Apple uses this glass to protect its iPhone cameras and for the Touch ID home buttons on the iPhone 5s, MacRumors says.
It’s not clear how much money Apple will spend on the facility, but some are reporting that Apple bought a vacant plant in Mesa for $US100 million as a starting point.
Plus GT Advanced Technologies says Apple loaned it $US578 million. GT will own the operation inside Apple’s facility and will pay Apple back over five years, starting in 2015, it says.
An investment in a facility like this could mean Apple is expanding its use of sapphire glass, leading some to speculate it may be making a new smartwatch.
One thing is clear. Apple has been making an effort to bring more manufacturing back to the U.S. It is also assembling its MacBook Pro PCs at a Flextronics plant in Austin, Texas.
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