If you’ve been on the fence about buying any of this year’s four new iPhones, you will have a lot more time to consider after the phones get announced. There have been rumors about how Apple’s first 5G-enabled iPhones would be delayed for one reason or another but those have always been rumors. Now Apple CFO Luca Maestri himself confirmed that the iPhone 12 would be arriving a few weeks later than usual, which suggests a mid to late October launch after all.
This isn’t unprecedented in Apple’s history, of course. In fact, the iPhone X, which sported the biggest changes Apple has made in iPhone history, launched in November, almost two months after it was first announced. Apple sometimes does launch a product immediately after it is announced though, at times, it takes a few days a least before those ship.
Given Apple never really talks about its release schedule, this insight from a company executive is rare and telling. Maestri doesn’t give the reasons, of course, but an admission of a delay supports the tips and leaks about the late and slow progress of iPhone 12 development, indirectly or directly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The delay in shipments actually affects Apple and its partners more than users who will simply have to sit out the wait. As Axios points out, this means that earnings that are normally meant for the quarter ending in September would only appear in the last quarter of the year (or first quarter of the fiscal year). And it isn’t just Apple’s earnings that are affected either, as Qualcomm recently revealed it won’t be expecting that uptick in revenue until next quarter due to the delay of a major 5G flagship.
It could actually play well for consumers, ironically, as it gives them more time to weigh the pros and cons. The 5G iPhone 12 series is expected to be even more expensive than previous generations, in no small part thanks to the addition of 5G capabilities. This could make them a harder sell given the global economic situation, especially considering how the iPhone SE 2020 seems to be doing great in the market.