According to the Financial Times, Apple and Foxconn said they had discovered several student interns working overtime, and they were taking action. But that work experience ended up being what seems like a massive violation of child labor laws.
As one student explains: "We are being forced by our school to work here".
Foxconn said company policy does not allow interns, who represent a "very small" percentage of its workforce, to work more than 40 hours a week on "programme-related assignments".
Apple confirmed the report in a statement to the Times but denied the work was compulsory.
The report of the illegal overtime comes as Apple has been seeing high demand for the iPhone X. Pre-order sales for the device were "off the charts", according to Apple. "The goals and timing of internships are set not by student educational or training priorities but by the demand for products dictated by companies".
All of the work conducted was voluntary, "and compensated appropriately", Foxconn said.
The "Foxconn City" park outside of Shenzhen came under global scrutiny in 2010 after media reports about 18 suicide attempts and 14 deaths that year.More news: Google Play Black Friday deals include four months of free Play Music
In the past, both Apple and Foxconn have been accused of poor labor practices, but Apple has been working on ways to improve their labor practices and do yearly reviews of its supply chains worldwide.
Ultimately it's about production needs.
The maximum for overtime per day under the labour law is three hours - meaning the total working day should not exceed 11 hours.
Having high school students working overtime to build a handset that was reportedly hampered by production delays certainly doesn't look good.
"What is behind these Apple products are millions of hands and millions of untold lives", Dejian Zeng wrote.
"If I don't stay I won't graduate school, but my body can't take it".
Foxconn could not be reached for comment.