Apple is reporting unexpected positive interest in the iPhone 12 but it definitely wasn’t a smooth ride getting to this point. And even with the company’s latest and greatest smartphone already fully unveiled, it might still need to weather one more storm up ahead. Industry sources are now claiming that the chips necessary to manage the iPhone 12’s bigger power demands might soon be in short supply, a situation that could affect the phone’s availability during the holiday season.
The iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro are already very late, and that’s not yet considering their larger Max counterparts. Mostly due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which resulted in closed factories, travel restrictions, and reduced work hours, the launch of Apple’s 2020 smartphone has been delayed more than its usual window. Now the warm reception for the iPhone 12 is reportedly in danger of being met with a cold shoulder of supply shortage.
The culprit this time is the power management chip that has become even more necessary in this year’s iPhone generation. The iPhone 12 is more powerful and also more power-hungry than ever before, partly thanks to the 5G modem that is inside every unit, not to mention additional chips required to support that feature.
Complicating matters is how manufacturers have been stockpiling components also due to the ongoing pandemic. And then there’s Huawei, who has pretty much frantically tried to get as much supplies as it could before it becomes forever blocked from buying these parts because of a US ban. Whatever supplies component makers have left and are able to still make will most likely be diverted to Apple, but that might not be enough to supply the expected surge in demand in the coming weeks.
The good news is that Apple’s strategy of sourcing parts from different suppliers could at least help buffer that shortage. The company, however, has also ramped up productions with the holidays in sight and even CEO Tim Cook admits it’s uncertain how long supply constraints will last before they finally stabilize.