Tim Cook at FoxconnSource: Apple

What you need to know

  • Apple was expected to announce a 5G iPhone 12 in September.
  • One analyst believes that coronavirus might push that back to October.
  • That's based on a conversation with "an expert" on Apple's supply chain.

Apple could be set to miss its usual September iPhone launch this year, according to a Bank of America analyst. They cite coronavirus and the impact it's having on Apple's supply chain as the reason.

Bank of America believes that Apple might have to wait until October to announce a 5G iPhone 12, according to a Bloomberg report.

Apple had also been rumored to have an iPhone 9/iPhone SE launch planned for March, but that is also said to be unlikely at this point.

Bank of America wrote that Apple's highly anticipated 5G iPhone could see its fall release delayed by a month as a result of the outbreak. The firm cited a conversation with an expert on the company's supply chain, Elliot Lan. Lan also expects the launch of the iPhone SE2 will be delayed "by a few months" due to "both supply issues as well as the weaker demand environment from COVID-19."

BofA analyst Wamsi Mohan believes that Apple's prospects for a September launch will depend on how quickly Foxconn and other parts manufacturers are able to get their plants back up to operational capacity. Those plants have been closed or running at reduced capacity due to the recent coronavirus outbreak.

Apple's 2020 launch schedule as a whole is likely fluid at this moment in time, with nobody really sure what kind of mid-term impact coronavirus will have on the Apple manufacturing machine. If there's one company that has the know-how required to deal with supply chain issues, it's an Apple lead by an expert in the subject - Tim Cook.