Well before Donald Trump became the Republican nominee for President, the current President-elect didn't mince words when it came to American companies relying upon factories in China for manufacturing purposes.
Speaking to a crowd at Liberty University last January, Trump said if he were to become President, he would take steps to ensure Apple "builds their damn computers in this country." More broadly, Trump added that he'd like to see Apple manufacture all of their devices in the United States instead of outsourcing said duties to Asian-based partners such as Foxconn.
While Trump's promise will likely go unfulfilled, Apple reportedly isn't taking any chances. In an apparent effort to remain prepared for any type of new policy Trump might dream up, Apple has reportedly asked both Foxconn and Pegatron about the feasibility of "moving iPhone production" to the United States.
Another source said that while Foxconn had been working on the request from Apple Inc., its biggest customer that accounts for more than 50% of its sales, Chairman Terry Gou had been less enthusiastic due to an inevitable rise in production costs.
"Making iPhones in the U.S. means the cost will more than double," the source said.
Pegatron, meanwhile, is also cold to the idea, with a source reportedly claiming Pegatron nipped the idea in the bud due to economic considerations.
Broadly speaking, the likelihood of Apple moving iPhone production to the United States appears to be slim to none. Apple's manufacturing partners in China operate massive factories that are expressly designed for consumer electronics production at scale. Additionally, these factories often employ thousands of workers with specialized skills that simply can't be found amongst the U.S. workforce.