Apple has been forced to halt iPhone production for the first time in what is being called “the nightmare before Christmas.”
The tech giant has reportedly had to stop the production line “for several days” owing to supply chain limitations and China’s ongoing issues with chips.
A supply chain manager told newspaper Nikkei “Due to limited components and chips, it made no sense to work overtime on holidays and give extra pay for front-line workers […] That has never happened before. The Chinese golden holiday in the past was always the most hustling time when all of the assemblers were gearing up for production.”
The report goes on to describe the situation as the “nightmare before Christmas” and indicates that Apple failed to meet production targets in both September and October for the iPhone 13, missing out by about 20%.
This also led to a knock-on effect of Apple’s other flagship devices – including the iPad and older generations of the iPhone such as the iPhone 12 and the iPhone SE.
Nikkei reports: “Over the same period, the reallocation of the shared components squeezed iPad assembly even more, leading to about 50% less production volume than planned, while the production forecast for older generations of iPhones also dropped around 25%.”
The report also went on to state that sources had claimed the situation had “not improved much” by November.
The halt comes after Apple CEO Tim Cook previously attributed the production issues to problems brought on by COVID, as well as industry-wide chip shortages.
He told CNBC: “We had a very strong performance despite larger than expected supply constraints, which we estimate to be around $6 billion. The supply constraints were driven by the industry wide chip shortages that have been talked about a lot, and COVID-related manufacturing disruptions in Asia.”