Asia iPhone and iPad holiday sales under threat from supply squeeze

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What you need to know

  • A report is warning of a supply squeeze on Apple products in Asia this year.
  • Lead times in some countries are up as high as two months for its most popular products.

A new report ahead of Black Friday claims that Apple will struggle to get many of its best iPhones and best iPads into the hands of its customers in time for the holidays in Asia, with many facing lead times of up to eight weeks.

From Nikkei Asia:

Apple will not be able to deliver new iPads to consumers in key Asian markets in time for Christmas, according to the latest delivery estimates, as the supply crunch hits the U.S. company ahead of its crucial holiday sales season.

Some iPads in the Philippines have an eight-week delivery lead time, whilst ordering the same devices in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan, South Korea, Thailand, and Malaysia after Cyber Monday will be too late for a Christmas delivery.

Nikkei says that delivery times for Apple's iPhone 13, while shorter than the iPad, are still much longer than the usual 3 to 5 days customers have come to expect:

Normally, consumers are able to receive their iPhones and iPads in three to five days. But it is already too late for shoppers in the Philippines to order the latest iPhone 13 Pro in time for Christmas. In other key Asian markets, including China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Malaysia, the waiting time for the latest iPhone is about four weeks.

The report notes Apple is less affected by the " severe congestion that is plaguing ports around the world" because it ships its products by air. Instead, Apple is being hit by "production constraints" due to silicon shortages and COVID lockdowns in some manufacturing bases such as Vietnam. Power shortages in China are also noted as a factor.

Nikkei says that a previously reported move to shift iPad components to iPhone production saw 50% fewer iPads made by Apple in October and September.

Around the world, the supply of Apple products continues to be a premium, with Black Friday perhaps the best time to ensure you can score whatever you're after at the onset of the holiday season.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.

Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9