Chinese electronic manufacturing company Foxconn announced it would replace a portion of its workforce with one million new robot workers, according to BGR via Xinhua News Agency.
Foxconn, a major producer of electronics components for Apple, HP, Nokia, Palm and Sony, has gained notoriety recently over a string of suicides from its workers, apparently due to harsh working conditions. BGR also reported that Foxconn began forcing its worker to sign “anti-suicide pledges” that were basically agreements to not sue the company or bring excessive demands (post-mortem?).
While it is unclear how a dead person could sue a company for harsh working conditions, or how it can avoid bad publicity when its workers are dying off, what is clear is that Foxconn has had enough of unpredictable human irritability. The new robots cannot self-destruct or cause bad publicity, but will perform “simple and routine work” such as part assembly and welding.
The Foxconn chairman, who made the announcement at an employee dance party, said the number of robot workers will increase to 300,000 next year and 1 million in three years.