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The iPhone X shortage might not be as bad as we thought

Published Sep 26th, 2017 4:14PM EDT
iPhone X Release Date
Image: Apple Inc.

A curious report said earlier this week that Apple asked iPhone X suppliers to slow down production in spite of rumors that say Apple is struggling with some iPhone X components. A distinct report indicates the TrueDepth camera responsible for the sophisticated Face ID facial recognition system as the main culprit for the iPhone X’s major delay.

A third story on the matter claims that the complex camera and sensors array in the iPhone X’s notch is to blame for the delay.

According to Nikkei Review the yield (percentage of production that’s acceptable quality) for 3D sensors is so low that Apple is only making tens of thousands of iPhone X units every day.

Yuanta Investment Consulting analyst Jeff Pu offered a similar overall picture. Apparently, the only major issue left in the production of iPhone X is the 3D sensor.

Pu said that mass production of iPhone X should start in the second week of October, and handsets will be shipped to global distributors a week later.

While some sources told Nikkei that Apple can only make tens of thousands of iPhone X units every day, Pu thinks Apple will manufacture 2 million units in September alone and up to 10 million by the end of October.

Will that be enough to meet demand? That’s hard to say given that Apple hasn’t released iPhone sales numbers in years. The latest record belongs to the iPhone 6s, which sold 13 million units during the opening weekend. Since then Apple has not shared launch weekend sales, and it’s likely the iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 did not beat that record. A recent report shows that iPhone 8 sales may be worse than iPhone 5s, as buyers look forward to the iPhone X.

Pu further estimates Apple to manufacture 40 million iPhone X units by the end of the year, 5 million fewer phones than initially expected. Supply, meanwhile, will be tight after November 3rd.

Chris Smith
Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he closely follows the events in Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises. Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.