Apple is delaying the production ramp-up of its flagship iPhones coming later this year by about a month, The Wall Street Journal reports, citing “people familiar with the changes,” as the COVID-19 pandemic weakens global consumer demand and disrupts manufacturing throughout the supply chain in Asia.
Apple is forging ahead with plans to release four new iPhone models later this year, people familiar with its plans say. The phones, some with 5G connectivity, will vary in price and come in three sizes — 5.4 inches, two measuring 6.1 inches, and one at 6.7 inches, all featuring organic light-emitting diode, or OLED, screens, the people said.
Apple usually unveils new iPhone models in mid-September and begins selling them before the end of the month. To do so, it usually ramps up mass-production in the early summer, building up inventory around August.
This year, while Apple would still be building some of the new phones in the July-to-September period, the mass-production ramp-up will slide back by about a month, the people said.
Apple is slashing the number of handsets that it plans to make in the second half of this year by as much as 20%, one of the people said. It isn’t clear whether the slashed amount for 2020 would be pushed back into 2021 for manufacturing.
MacDailyNews Take: It’s not at all unprecedented that Apple could have a staggered iPhone launch this year, à la 2017 when iPhone 8 and 8 Plus launched on September 22, 2017 followed several weeks later by the iPhone X on November 3, 2017.