iPhone 14 Post-Launch Availability Jeopardized by Lockdowns in China: Report

BY Chandraveer Mathur

Published 25 May 2022

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The COVID-19-induced lockdowns in China appear to have taken their toll on the unreleased iPhone 14 ahead of its launch. According to a new supply chain report, Apple suppliers are three weeks behind schedule in preparing for the production of at least one of the latest models.

According to a Nikkei Asia report, Apple suppliers are working at full tilt to catch up to the schedule. However, the COVID-19 lockdowns in China are making matters “challenging.” Anonymous sources told the publication that despite easing restrictions, the lockdowns which began late in March in and around Shanghai had taken their toll on the iPhone 14 production schedule. The report adds that the delays could impact the initial production volumes in the worst case.

Apple is expected to launch four iPhone 14 models this year. Seemingly thanks to dissatisfactory iPhone 13 mini sales, the company is discontinuing the ‘mini’ branding. Rumor has it that this year, the Cupertino giant will offer the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro with 6.1-inch displays, while the iPhone 14 Max and iPhone 14 Pro Max would get 6.7-inch displays.

The report doesn’t say which iPhone 14 model will bear the brunt of the lockdowns in China. However, Nikkei’s sources claim all four models are stuck in the EVT stage. This is atypical behavior because most iPhones complete EVT by the end of June and proceed to the verification stage.

Subsequently, the new iPhone models will undergo a new product introduction (NPI) at Apple’s assemblers, followed by more verification processes. Mass production usually starts at the end of August. A veteran supply chain analyst told the publication that it could take the supply chain a couple of months to bounce back from the effects of the lockdowns.

[Via Nikkei Asia]