Apple's sapphire facility is for a "secret project", says Tim Cook

When asked about Apple’s U.S. manufacturing efforts during a question-and-answer session with Apple shareholders today, CEO Tim Cook said the company’s new sapphire production facility was for a “secret project” that he couldn’t talk about. Cook did not give any more information, but did say separately that the company is working on “extensions of what we’re already doing” and also “things you can’t see”. He reiterated that secrecy is important because Apple is “getting ripped off left, right and sideways” by competitors.

For a split second, AppleAAPL -0.27%’s annual shareholder meeting offered the promise of excitement. In prepared remarks before a question-and-answer session with shareholders, Chief Executive Tim Cook said the company was focused on growth – so much so that he was prepared to take the wraps off some new products. A pregnant pause hung in the air. The audience, accustomed to Apple unveiling new products at carefully orchestrated events, gasped and cheered. But it was too good to be true. “I’m just kidding. I gotta have some fun,” Cook said. He told shareholders that employees are working on great new products, some of which may be viewed as “extensions of what we’re already doing,” while others are “things that you can’t see.”  Maintaining secrecy is important, he said, because talking about the future gives competitors a road map of Apple’s plans and the company is “getting ripped off left, right and sideways.”

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