Apple’s highly anticipated iPad 3 will reportedly be in short supply until some time in the second quarter according to a new report. Industry watcher DigiTimes on Thursday cited anonymous sources within Apple’s supply chain in claiming that the high-resolution 2,048 x 1,536-pixel display panels being supplied to Apple by Sharp may be in short supply. Initial shipments are expected to be limited as a result, and production supposedly won’t be ramped up until some time in the second quarter. Apple will unveil its next-generation iPad 3 at a press conference on March 7th and the tablet is expected to become available soon after. Reports suggest the iPad 3 will feature a high-resolution 9.7-inch display, a quad-core Apple A6 processor, embedded 4G LTE and a slightly redesigned aluminum case. More →
Seagate said in its recent fiscal second-quarter earnings report that it expects the flooding in Thailand to result in a continued hard drive shortage throughout 2012. The company originally reported issues after flooding affected its factories in October, 2011. In addition, analysts have suggested that the floods could increase laptop and desktop PC prices, and hurt overall sales for major computer vendors. Seagate said that it shipped 47 million hard drives during the second fiscal quarter of 2012, which was down just 4% from the same quarter last year. The company confirmed in its earning statement that it has already secured long-term deals to make sure prices don’t inflate further. More →
Last week T-Mobile said that the high demand for the G2x had resulted in “inventory constraints,”and that it was working with LG to get the device back on shelves as quickly as possible. As a result of those constraints, however, the carrier has increased the price of the G2x to $249.99 after a $50 mail-in rebate —a $50 boost from its debut price of $199. Hopefully T-Mobile drops the cost back down after LG increases its production volume, but the carrier has given no indication that will be the case. More →
According to Business Insider, a report from FBR analyst Craig Berger claims that Apple’s goal of producing 40-45 million iPads is “out of reach.” Apple’s current second-quarter production target is 6.2 million iPad units, but that may not be possible due to production issues with Hon Hai, Berger said. As a result, actual iPad production could drop to 5.2 million units during the third quarter. Similarly, Berger argues that Apple may face production issues from the March earthquake in Japan, particularly in relation to touchscreen displays. Berger’s report is on a par with a recent DigiTimes article that suggested Apple would have a hard time manufacturing enough iPhone 4 and iPad 2 units to meet demand due to material and labor shortages at Foxconn. More →
Sony Ericsson released a statement on Friday delaying the broader launch of the Xperia Neo until the third quarter due to supply chain disruptions caused by the earthquake in Japan. The firm said that volumes of its Xperia arc and Xperia PLAY were also affected, but it doesn’t appear that there are any delays with those launches. Sony Ericsson’s official statement is as follows:
As Sony Ericsson continues to assess the impact of the situation in Japan on its business, we have communicated to our operator customers and distributors that some volume of Xperia arc, Xperia PLAY and Xperia neo phones has been affected. Xperia neo has already been introduced to the marketplace in limited quantities. However, due to supply chain disruptions resulting from the situation in Japan, we have shifted the timing of Xperianeo’s broader launch and it is now planned for early Q3.
We will address this topic at the time of our Q1 financial results announcement call that is scheduled for April 19, 2011.
Sony Ericsson’s Italian Facebook page has a similar explanation, and confirms that the Neo will launch in July. More →
Apple has reportedly placed a new order for 30 million display panels per year from leading display manufacturer AU Optronic. The unconfirmed report from Taiwan Economic News suggests Apple paid a huge 300-400% premium to lock in the order, which could see AU Optronics produce up to 100,000 iPad 2 displays each day. The order accounts for about half of the global tablet market, the report claims. Apple had sourced its 9.7-inch iPad 2 displays from LGD and Samsung and some manufacturing took place in Japan, which could be part of the reason for Apple’s willingness to pay a premium to a new supplier. It is also unclear if the move is a response to light leakage problems many have reported with Apple’s current iPad 2 displays. More →
Two of Apple’s component suppliers, Mitsubishi Gas Chemical Co and Toshiba, have reportedly shut down some of their operations in Japan in the wake of the March 11th earthquake and tsunami. According to Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster, this could result in shortages of Apple’s iPad 2 and iPhone 4 in March, through the rest of the first quarter, and into June. Toshiba manufactures 40% of the world’s flash memory, and Mitsubishi Gas Chemical Co is believed to be Apple’s go-to company for BT resin — which is used on circuit boards. Munster says Apple’s strategy to buy from multiple component suppliers could help soften the blow. “This strategy has proven to be an effective way for Apple to leverage its balance sheet and its position as one of the largest buyers of many of the components it uses; moreover, this strategy may prove particularly helpful if supply is limited and pricing increases,” wrote Munster. “Finally, we believe Apple buys futures on important components, which will help offset near-term pricing swings. Our conclusion is that Apple is well positioned to suffer proportionally less than its competitors.” Apple’s stock traded down sharply yesterday on the news of an analyst downgrade and potential supply shortages. More →
The shortage of critical components needed to manufacture the HTC Droid Incredible shows no sign of letting up, as the popular Verizon Wireless smartphone has had its ship by date pushed back to July 12th. Amid the shortage, demand for the Incredible is so high that Verizon Wireless CEO Lowell McAdam recently noted that his company “had to pull way back” on shipments to retail stores in order to focus on online sales. The shortage has also allowed the ageing Motorola Droid — itself facing shortages — to outsell the HTC device. One of the major reasons for the delay is Samsung’s inability to quickly produce AMOLED displays. High demand for handsets with AMOLED displays has placed serious strains on Samsung’s production lines and shows no sign of letting up. Of course to those who have been attempting to get a Droid Incredible since it launched, knowing the reason for the delay isn’t all that comforting. But anyone willing to pay a bit of a premium shouldn’t have a very hard time finding one on sites like eBay and Craigslist. Enterprising individuals there appear to have plenty of stock, albeit with a healthy markup.
Thanks, bluehorseshoe! More →
We’re not too sure what’s going on here, but all of a sudden finding a HTC Droid Incredible for sale has become virtually impossible. No longer proudly on display on Verizon’s homepage, the only way to find the phone is to do a manual search for it. It’s still listed as available for sale, but clicking on the “buy” button redirects to a page which screams in bold letters that “the selection you made is unavailable at this time.” Verizon Wireless CEO Lowell McAdam recently bemoaned that his company was unable to keep the device in stock thanks in part to a shortage of AMOLED displays from Samsung. But still…pulling the phone from the website because it’s sold out? That’s just strange.
Anything you want to tell us, Verizon?
UPDATE: According to Verizon, this is all just one big misunderstanding. Verizon is now giving away free 2GB microSD cards with the sale of each Droid Incredible. Because of this, the order number on the website had to be changed. This didn’t happen right away thus explaining perceived lack of availability.
Thanks Jinny and JoeBold! More →
Speaking at the Reuters Global Technology Summit on Thursday, Lee Wong-jong, VP of marketing for Samsung, said that the global shortage of OLED displays will continue in foreseeable future as demand has greatly outpaced supply. Said Lee, “demand for high-end displays is very strong and we may continue to fail to meet all customer requirements, even after expanding capacity by seven-fold, until next year.” Such delays are part of the reason Verizon is having great difficulties meeting sales quotas with the HTC Droid Incredible. Last week Verizon Wireless CEO Lowell McAdam said the failure of Samsung and other part suppliers to deliver crucial components were the reason the Droid Incredible has yet to outsell the Motorola DROID. To combat this, Samsung recently committed $2.15 billion through 2012 to create the largest fleet of AMOLED displays. But in the meantime, delays will be the new reality as smartphone sales for 2010 are expected to be 50% higher than in 2009. More →
An inadequate supply of parts is partly to blame for widespread shortages of Droid Incredible, Verizon Wireless CEO Lowell McAdam said on Friday. Having been unable to stockpile enough key components such as the WVGA capacitive display assemblies manufactured by Samsung, entire shipments of the HTC-made Android smartphone are selling out within hours of their arrival at retail stores. According to McAdam, the shortage is so dire that his company “had to pull way back” on deliveries in order to focus on online sales. Had there not been such a dearth of handsets available, McAdam said the Incredible would have outsold its predecessor, the Motorola DROID; some 100,000 units of the Incredible were sold during the first two days of sale. As of this morning, Verizon’s website claims that orders for the Incredible will be fulfilled by June 3rd. More →
And so it begins. Not even 24 hours after the Palm Pre announcement, Sprint CEO Dan Hesse assumed the roll of Buzz Killington when he explained Sprint’s lack of high-visibility Pre advertising to investors. According to Hesse, Sprint “didn’t intend to advertise [the Pre] heavily early on because we think we are going to have shortages for a while” and that it “won’t be able to keep up with demand for the device in the early period of time.” Okay, so let’s get this straight. Sprint didn’t heavily advertise the Palm Pre — the handset that is supposed to turn things around for the company — because Hesse & Co. are afraid of pissing people off if they might have to wait a few weeks for their phones to arrive? Hesse, buddy, shortages can often be an amazing way to pique the general public’s interest. It worked with the first iPhone, it worked with the Storm and it sure as hell worked with the Wii. It won’t work for the Pre however, if no one knows the handset exists. Ugh.
Got your hands on a shiny new iPhone 3G? If you answered yes, you’re one of the lucky ones. For those of you that didn’t pick up the new handset during the last week, you could be in for a long hard journey. According to industry analyst Gene Munster, the current iPhone shortage could persist through mid-August, crushing the dreams of would-be iPhone 3G owners everywhere. Herman Munster dropped word that initial demand for the handset outstripped Apple’s estimates, resulting in a supply shortage that is causing problems across the U.S. Things should even out before too long, but if you’ve had your sights set on a getting one within the next 3-4 weeks, you might want to consider camping out at your local AT&T or Apple store. Make that Apple store, since we all know AT&T stores selling iPhones are totally like 1,800 of Steve Jobs’ red-headed step childs. They’re good from some iPhone cases but that’s about it. Sorry, folks!