iPhone 13 component shortage lengthens wait times


iPhone 13 Pro's new Ultrawide camera enables impressive-looking macro photography.
A shortage in an iPhone 13 camera component is reportedly reducing production.
Photo: Apple

Production of the new iPhone 13 series isn’t catching up to demand. A shortage of a critical component is keeping wait times long for many versions of the handset.

But heavy demand is also reportedly adding to the delays.

Shortage of iPhone 13 camera modules

An unnamed sources told Nikkei Asia, “Assemblers can still produce the new iPhones, but there’s a supply gap [in] that the inventories of the camera modules are running low.” It’s allegedly related to the components needed for sensor-shift optical image stabilization that’s in all four iPhone 13 models.

The Covid-19 pandemic is making the problem worse for the production facilities in Vietnam. But Nikkei Asia reports “the situation may improve as soon as around mid-October as production at one of the key iPhone camera module manufacturing facilities in southern Vietnam has gradually resumed in recent days after several months of on-and-off disruption.”

Lots of demand, too

Insufficient components aren‘t the only reason iPhone 13 buyers are having to wait. Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo reports strong demand for the new device too, stating that it’s selling faster than they iPhone 12 was immediately after launch.

Demand in China on launch day earlier in September was enough to bog down the official Apple website. Chinese state media said over 5 million units had been pre-ordered in that country.

Lengthy iPhone 13 wait times

The time between ordering many iPhone 13 models and the delivery date stretches out weeks. Devices ordered now might not arrive until November.

Place an order for a base-model iPhone 13 Pro Max on Apple’s website on September 29 and the scheduled arrival window is November 1 to November 8. The wait for the smaller iPhone 13 Pro is just as long. Order a 6.1-inch iPhone 13 an it’ll arrive between October 20 and October 25.

But supplies of the tiny iPhone 13 mini aren‘t so constrained, despite the component shortage. Cult of Mac checked in several cities and this version is available for same-day delivery. Otherwise, the wait is October 12 through October 15. This is likely an indication of weak demand for this particular version. There’s been little enough interest that Apple allegedly won‘t make another 5.4-inch model after this one.


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