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Tim Cook Pledges American Apple Mac Production

Nathan Eddy is a contributor to eWeek and TechWeekEurope, covering cloud and BYOD

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Apple boss Tim Cook has pledged to manufacture a line of Mac computers in the United States

The boss of Apple has used his first television interview as CEO to declare that the iPad maker will be bringing the production of some of its computers back into the United States.

This came amid reports earlier this week that Apple had already been manufacturing some of its devices in the US. However CEO Tim Cook told NBC news anchor Brian Williams that Apple will move the production of one of its Mac lines to America, a move that will cost Apple approximately $100 million (£62m).

American Skills

In the interview, which is Cook’s first since he took the helm as CEO in mid-2011, he also said the company plans to build a data centre in Texas, in addition to existing data centres in North Carolina, Nevada and Oregon. Cook declined to state specifically where the computers would be made, however.

“We’ve been working for years on doing more and more in the United States,” Cook told Williams. “When you back up and look at Apple’s effect on job creation in the United States, we estimate that we’ve created more than 600,000 jobs now.”

Apple is one of the most bulletproof brand names in the world but has come under fire since reports emerged in October that Foxconn, the Taiwanese manufacturing company that makes the iPhone handset, had been employing underage workers at its factories.

Cook said it was a lack of skilled workers in America that led Apple to manufacture the iPhone and its other products overseas. “It’s not so much about price, it’s about the skills,” he said. “The consumer electronics world was really never here. It’s a matter of starting it here.”

Television Move?

In addition to his claims that Apple is bringing device manufacturing to the US, Cook also had some choice words for the makers of television sets, leading to a flurry of speculation online that he was dropping hints about Apple’s long-rumoured TV.

“When I go into my living room and turn on the TV, I feel like I have gone backwards in time by 20 to 30 years,” Cook said. “It’s an area of intense interest. I can’t say more than that.”

An Apple TV is no longer a matter of “if,” but “when,” Piper Jaffray analysts Gene Munster and Douglas J. Clinton wrote in a 1 June research note. The pair forecast a retail price between $1,500 (£935) and $2,000 (£1,246) for a TV with a display between 42 and 55 inches, for the new device to add between 4 and 8 percent to Apple’s 2013 revenue and for it to accomplish nothing short of revolutionizing how people consume content in their living rooms.

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Originally published on eWeek.