Apple is pouring $390 million into an American company that helps power AirPods and FaceID — an investment that will create 500 jobs in Texas.
The money will come from a $1 billion fund that Apple established earlier this year to boost U.S. manufacturing jobs.
Apple says the cash will help Finisar, a chip maker, restart a 700,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Sherman, Texas, by the second half of next year. The new plant will create 500 “high-skill” jobs.
Finisar produces “vertical-cavity surface-emitting lasers” (VCSELs), which power some Apple‘s newest features, including Face ID, Animoji, Portrait mode selfies and AirPods.
The investment will go toward rebooting a previously closed 700,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Sherman, Texas. The new plant, which will create 500 jobs, is expected to open in the second half of next year.
“VCSELs power some of the most sophisticated technology we’ve ever developed and we’re thrilled to partner with Finisar over the next several years to push the boundaries of VCSEL technology and the applications they enable,” Apple COO Jeff Williams said in a statement.
AirPods are wireless earbuds introduced in 2016 as an untethered way to listen to music, take phone calls and use the Siri voice assistant. Its arrival caused backlash for being easy to lose, but experts said it could be the future of headphones.
Meanwhile, Face ID — which debuted on the iPhone X this year — is touted as a more secure way of unlocking your phone. Considered difficult to hack than other systems, other smartphone companies could take Apple‘s lead and launch similar features in the future.
Finisar is the second company to receive an investment from Apple’s U.S. manufacturing fund. In May, Apple (AAPL) pledged $200 million to glass manufacturer Corning. The companymakes Gorilla Glass displays for smartphones and tablets, including for Apple products.
At the time, CEO Tim Cook teased Apple could add more money to the fund, calling the $1 billion an “initial” donation.
President Trump has been pushing Apple to move its manufacturing efforts from China to the U.S. On the campaign trial, Trump said: “We’re going to get Apple to build their damn computers and things in this country instead of in other countries.”
In July, Trump said Apple CEO Tim Cook has “promised” to build “three big plants, beautiful plants” in the U.S.
It’s unclear where those facilities would be located or how many workers would be employed.
“If we can create many manufacturing jobs, those manufacturing jobs create more jobs around them because you have a service industry that builds up around them,” Cook said of the fund on CNBC earlier this year.
The tech giant already relies on some domestic manufacturing. For example, the Mac Pro is assembled in Austin, Texas, and so are its Samsung processors. Other iPhone parts, such as cell and Wi-Fi radios, as well as its Corning displays, are made in the U.S.
Apple isn’t the only tech company adding more jobs to the U.S.
Taiwanese electronics manufacturer Foxconn has pledged to invest $10 billion to build a factory that makes LCD screens in Wisconsin. The facility is expected to create between 3,000 and 13,000 new jobs and should be open by 2020.
If you’re on a Mac with recent macOS release (Sierra or El Capitan), then Apple is defaulting to try and automatically downloading the 5GB installer for macOS High Sierra in the background to your computer. When the download completes, the Mac then sends you a notification suggesting that High Sierra is ready to install, with the notification only having two options; “Install” and “Details”. Some users may find this convenient to automatically download a major software update and casually suggest to install it onto a Mac, but other users may be less than excited about this behavior, particularly if you’re not yet ready to install macOS High Sierra onto a computer.
If you do not want macOS High Sierra to be automatically downloaded onto a Mac, maybe because you’re avoiding the macOS update or postponing it while a particular bug or issue is sorted out, we’ll walk through a few steps on how to prevent a Mac from automatically downloading the MacOS High Sierra installer.
How to Stop MacOS High Sierra Installer from Downloading Automatically
The first thing you can to prevent High Sierra from automatically downloading do is toggle system preferences to prevent the automatic downloading of updates in the background.
Go to the Apple menu and choose “System Preferences”
Go to the “App Store” panel
Uncheck the box next to “Download newly available updates in the background”
Exit System Preferences
This alone should prevent macOS Sierra or Mac OS X El Capitan from downloading the “Install macOS High Sierra” file onto your Mac into the Applications folder, and prevent from sending the notification that it’s ready to install.
Some Mac users may want to maintain automatic software downloads and updates however, but still avoid macOS High Sierra and the macOS High Sierra installer. Or perhaps you want to be absolutely certain that the Mac App Store does not download the installer for High Sierra. The next tip will detail a trick to accomplish that.
How to Completely Prevent the Mac App Store from Downloading the MacOS High Sierra Installer
If you’re committed to avoiding macOS High Sierra for whatever reason, you can completely prevent the “Install macOS High Sierra” application from ever downloading via the Mac App Store with this trick, which basically spoofs a copy of the installer and locks it down so that it can’t be overwritten. If you want to install High Sierra down the road, you will need to undo this and remove the spoof installer.
From the Finder of Mac OS, go to the Applications folder
Look for the legitimate “Install macOS High Sierra” in the directory, and if it exists, delete it by dragging to the Trash
Locate a small application in the /Applications folder, like “Launchpad”
Duplicate the selected Launchpad app by selecting Launchpad then hitting Command+D (or going to the File menu and choosing “Duplicate”)
Rename the “Launchpad copy” file to “Install macOS High Sierra” – the name must exactly match the original authentic macOS High Sierra installer
Now choose to “Get Info” on the freshly named fake “Install macOS High Sierra” app by selecting it and hitting Command+i (or going to the File menu and choosing ‘Get Info’)
Click the “Locked” checkbox button to lock down the renamed app, then close the Get Info window
You can confirm this has worked by opening the Mac App Store and trying to download the MacOS High Sierra installer, which will fail with a message stating “macOS High Sierra failed to download”.
Essentially what you have done is taken another system level app from Apple (in this case Launchpad, but you can use another system app if you want), made a copy of it, renamed it to “Install macOS High Sierra” and locked it so that the file can not be changed or overwritten. This means when the App Store attempts to download MacOS High Sierra it will fail because the system will think the High Sierra installer file already exists, and discover that it is locked and can not be overwritten.
Important: This completely prevents the App Store from being able to download the MacOS High Sierra installer as long as the file exists in the Application folder. You will not be able to install macOS High Sierra on the Mac for as long as that renamed Launchpad / fake Installer exists in the Applications directory. If you want to reverse this, simply delete the fake “Install macOS High Sierra” app, or Get Info again and unlock the file, and then move the item
Why does macOS High Sierra Installer automatically download in the first place?
Apple has decided to automatically download the macOS High Sierra installer onto Macs running El Capitan or Sierra, a support document states the following:
If you’re using OS X El Capitan v10.11.5 or later, High Sierra conveniently downloads in the background, making it even easier to upgrade your Mac. When the download has completed, you receive a notification indicating that High Sierra is ready to be installed. Click Install in the notification to get started.
If you want to install High Sierra later, just dismiss the notification. Install it at any time by opening the file named Install macOS High Sierra from your Applications folder, Launchpad, or Spotlight. Or delete the installer by dragging it to the Trash. You can always get it again from the App Store.
This aggressive automatic download push for High Sierra was pointed out 512pixels and Tidbits, both of which make various good points about why it may not be a great idea to automatically download a 5.2GB file in the background, let alone try and install a brand new operating system, which is not without some reported problems, onto unsuspecting users, and without even backing up their computers beforehand (which would prevent a potential easy downgrade from macOS High Sierra to what you had before).
Of course another option that is less aggressive is to disable Notifications and alerts in Mac OS completely by enabling a 24/7 Do Not Disturb mode, which will simply prevent the “install macOS High Sierra” alerts from showing up on screen, but it wouldn’t prevent the download. Personally, I hate notifications and alerts of all kinds on my Mac and use the 24/7 Do Not Disturb trick so that I’m not pestered by nagging alerts and inconsequential distractions, but many users really like the alerts feature and may not find that as a reasonable alternative.
Of course if you’re already on High Sierra, none of this is applicable to you, and if you don’t mind that High Sierra is possibly downloading in the background and pushing to install, you won’t care much about this either. And to be perfectly clear, this is not unique to High Sierra, Apple was also automatically downloading Sierra to Macs that were running El Capitan as well. Nonetheless, if you don’t like auto-downloading large files or system software, you may appreciate stopping the behavior on your own Mac or others you manage.