Apple, Samsung Called on to Stop Use of Deadly Chemicals in Factories

By Michelle Maisto  |  Posted 2014-05-03 Print this article Print

Roger Kay, principal analyst with Endpoint Technologies, addresses the question by pointing out that all products made with gallium arsenide are made in Korea.

"The arsenide side of it is arsenic, not exactly healthy for humans. Gallium just bonds well with it. GaAs is used for photon-electron conversion and is real handy for speed (certain paths can be optical, which is much faster than electrical). But making things with it is, well, we don't do it here anymore in the United States. But we use GaAs parts made there," Kay explained.

"Apple is trying to diversify away from Samsung, since they compete bitterly in high-mobility devices, but Samsung supplies screens and chips to Apple," Kay continued. "Apple would like to partner with basically anybody else. However, some of these items are made by only a few suppliers, and some of them only in one country. It'd be hard to be a good guy and be using these parts at all, wherever they're made."

As litigious as Samsung and Apple are, "and as willing as they are to poke each other in the eye, I don't think this is a line that either company wants to cross," Jack Narcotta, an analyst with Technology Business Research, told eWEEK, referring to any type of campaign touting that steps have been taken to stop fatally sickening employees.

"I can see both companies addressing it, in a way that makes it clear they're aware of the issue … and in a way that fits into their larger corporate messages," Narcotta added. "For Samsung, it's an issue of how do they address things in their supply chain. … But I don't see them jumping out and saying, 'We're working harder than the other guy.' I don't see that at all."


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