The iPhone 5’s intricate design is leading to supply shortages.
When Apple began selling the iPhone 5 on September 21, it quickly became the fastest-selling iPhone to date, with five million units sold in the first three days. However, sales have started to slow down since then, and they’ve begun falling short of analyst expectations.
It’s not that customers aren’t buying it, or that the iPhone 5 isn’t successful. The reason it’s not meeting expectations is because Apple’s manufacturing partner, Foxconn, simply can’t make it fast enough. Its design is so complicated that it’s the most difficult device Foxconn has ever built.
It’s gonna be a while. Thank goodness patience is a virtue.
In a research note from KGI, a financial analytics group out of China, oft-cited analyst Ming-Chi Kuo places the responsibility for the shortages in new iPhone 5 connectors squarely on the shoulders of a shift in the specific supplier of the connector from Foxconn (Hon Hai) to Foxlink (Cheng Uei), due to lower yield rates of the new unit type from Foxconn.
AppleInsider also reports sources saying that Apple has requested Foxlink pick up the slack and dedicate more workers and production lines to the Lightning cable production line.
On August 22, it became apparent that retailers across the United States were beginning to see shortages of 27-inch iMacs, sparking speculation that Apple’s popular all-in-one could be about to get a much-anticipated refresh. Now those tight supplies are affecting Apple’s own retail stores, which are quickly running out of both 27-inch iMac iterations.
Image used under Creative Commons license, from Flickr user: hddod
Sources in Apple’s supply chain have revealed that Foxconn Electronics is currently facing supply and labor shortages that could delay shipments of both the iPhone 4 and the iPad 2 during the second quarter.