A new set of tar­iffs from the Trump admin­is­tra­tion will put a 10 per­cent import tax on smart­watch­es, fit­ness track­ers, smart speak­ers, and Blue­tooth head­phones, start­ing Sep­tem­ber 1st. The admin­is­tra­tion plans to delay pro­posed tar­iffs on most con­sumer elec­tron­ics until Decem­ber 15th, includ­ing cell phones and lap­tops.

But the tar­iffs are still like­ly to land heav­i­ly on Apple, which relies on Chi­nese man­u­fac­tur­ing for its Home­Pod, Air­Pods, and Apple Watch. These goods were exempt­ed last year after man­u­fac­tur­ers sent let­ters to the gov­ern­ment ask­ing for relief. “It is dif­fi­cult to see how tar­iffs that hurt U.S. com­pa­nies and U.S. con­sumers will advance the Government’s objec­tives with respect to China’s tech­nol­o­gy poli­cies,” Apple wrote at the time.

Although the iPhone and Mac­Book Pro are spared until Decem­ber, this tar­iff hike will still have a sig­nif­i­cant impact on Apple’s bot­tom line. CEO Tim Cook said dur­ing the company’s last earn­ings call that, when com­bined, the company’s divi­sions for ser­vices, wear­ables, home, and acces­sories approach the size of a For­tune 50 com­pa­ny.

Apple’s seen the tar­iffs com­ing for near­ly a year now and has report­ed­ly explored mov­ing man­u­fac­tur­ing out of Chi­na in response. It also already expe­ri­enced a 10 per­cent import tax hike that affect­ed its charg­ers. Its prices didn’t change, how­ev­er; Apple and its sup­pli­ers absorbed the dif­fer­ence. We’ve reached out to Apple for com­ment on this most recent tar­iff news and will update if we hear back.

Pho­to by James Bare­ham / The Verge

Source link