Apple building new GPU unit in FL not CA

steve-jobs-iphone-apple.handoutJune 3, 2013

By John Seiler

Although Apple is expanding its GHQ in Cupertino, it’s also building up an important unit in Florida, the Orlando Design Center. Reports

“Apple has hired at least a dozen former AMD graphics engineers for its Orlando offices in recent months, according to a MacRumors review of employees’ LinkedIn profiles.

“The majority of hires, which include a graphics architecthardware engineer and others, occurred in January of this year.

“AMD laid off a number of employees last year in a corporate reorganization, and fired more in January. It seems likely that Apple hired a number of the laid off Orlando AMD engineers for a new team it’s building in the region.

“The company has also posted new job listings for Site Managers to head GPU teams in both Orlando and Cupertino.

“These hires and new listings are in addition to job listings posted last month for chip engineers for its Orlando Design Center.”

This is significant because it shows that Apple, while keeping its top management and design teams in California, continues to build major units in other states and countries. Highly significant would be if Apple  built these new chips in the Orlando area. It already has been shifting chip production away from Samsung, its arch-rival in cell phones.

And it promised President Obama to bring back some manufacturing to the United States, something he mentioned in his State of the Union address in January. But no promises were made in what state the manufacturing plants would be located.

California’s onerous regulations, especially AB 32, the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, preclude building plants here, meaning thousands of good, middle-class jobs will be lost.

Another mitigating factor is that cheap natural gas from fracking has cut costs so much that manufacturing in America now is cheaper than in many overseas countries. As my colleague Chris Reed has been detailing, almost every state has been eager to embrace fracking — except California.

High-tech geniuses will continue to flock to Silicon Valley to build the global computer industry. But for those with IQs <180, middle-class jobs will be found in other states.

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John SeilerAB 32AMDApple Corp.

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