The global mobile phone industry is massive and now records over 1.3 billion units in sales per annum. Most smartphones in the world are made in China, thanks to economies of scale. Some are made in Vietnam and a few other places. India is also rising as a major manufacturing hub for cell phones, and brands like Apple, Samsung, OPPO, Motorola, and others, are already moving some production there. Are there any mobile phones made in America today? Are there any American phone manufacturers?
We know that a number of phone brands are of American origin. The most prominent ones are Apple iPhone and Google Pixel. But there are other American phone brands as well, including the following:
- NUU Mobile
All the above brands are American in origin. But are their products made or manufactured in America?
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Which brands have phones that are made in America?
What cell phones are made in America? Apple is an American company, but its iPhone models are not manufactured in the USA. The same holds for Google Pixel phones. Like Apple, Google handles the design, but the manufacturing happens in China. So, neither Apple nor Google have their cell phones made in the USA.
What of CAT, BLU, and NUU Mobile? Like the big two dogs, their phones are not made in America either. BLU does all the designing in their Florida base, but all manufacturing is done in China. CAT phones are made by Bullitt, which has its manufacturing done in China. The same goes for NUU Mobile.
Once upon a time, the list of USA phone manufacturers included tech brands like HP, Compaq, Dell, and Motorola. They used to have their cell phones manufactured in the USA. But that was a different lifetime. All of them, except Motorola, have exited the mobile market. Motorola, once an American company, was acquired by Chinese smartphone company, Lenovo, in 2014, and so is now Chinese.
Today, most Motorola phone models are made in China. The company no longer has any manufacturing facilities in the United States of America. Read more about where Motorola phones are made.
Here are the cell phones that are made in America
Let’s cut to the chase. Are there any cell phones made in the USA? The simple answer to that is this: No; there are no mobile phones of any kind that are made in America any more. Once upon a time, some great smartphones used to be made in the USA. All cell phone manufacturing has shifted offshore – most of it to China. All Apple iPhones, Google Pixel phones, and all the cell phones by other American brands are all manufactured outside the United States of America.
There were no made in America cell phones in existence as of October 2020. But this changed before the year ran out. Read on to find out.
March 2021 update: American tech company, Librem, is now producing a US version of its privacy-focused Linux smartphone, Librem 5 USA, right here in the United States of America. The company states that “all the electronics will be made in our USA facility, and the entire phone will be assembled in the US”. This makes Librem the only American phone manufacturer today. The Librem 5 USA is an American made cell phone – the only smartphone made in USA.
It is marketed as a smartphone that does not track you or mine your personal data for sale or for advertising purposes. In addition, the Librem 5 USA has hardware kill switches to manually shut down connectivity features like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, cellular signal, as well as the microphone and camera.
So, if you are hunting for an American made cell phone, for now, there is only one: Librem 5 USA. It is the only one we are aware of at this time. There are no other cell phones made in the USA as at November 2022. We will keep this article updated should any more American made cell phones appear in the market. In the meantime, you may be interested in reading why there are no mainstream smartphones manufactured in the USA.
2023 update: Librem has announced an upgrade to the Librem 5 USA. Called the Liberty Phone, it has more RAM and storage, as well as faster charging.
PS: You can read more about the last American phone brands left standing.
PS: It turns out that the Freedom Phone, promoted under the banner of “Make America Great Again” (MAGA), is manufactured by UMIDIGI, a Chinese company with manufacturing facilities in China. Yes; it is made in China.
December 2022 update: With massive investments going into made-in-America chips, we can expect to see more American-made cell phones show up in the near future.