Apple intends to make a monopoly out of its sapphire production, manufacturing even more synthetic sapphire than the whole world. They have a sapphire plant in Mesa, Arizona and intend to ramp up production of parts that may be used to make things like solar cells or smartwatches.


Bloomberg says that Apple will create a lot of jobs in Arizona by increasing the production, since the sapphire requires furnaces to grow cylinders of sapphire during a while month. Then they are sliced to less than a milimeter thick and used on gadget screens. The improved version of the plant will produce a crazy amount of synthetic sapphire, reaching as much as two times the current worldwide capacity.

This means Apple will be able to make enough sapphire for 80 to 100 million iPhones a year. This is a technical process and involves a well trained  workforce. In Mesa things are more difficult than at Foxconn, where the iPads and iPhones are assembled by hand by more or less trained employees.