Demand for iPhone X boosts Apple suppliers
Minutes after preorders open, shipping times for new device extend up to six weeks in U.S.
TAIPEI— Apple’s biggest suppliers, from Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) to Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., climbed Monday after delivery times for the iPhone X stretched to as much as six weeks in the U.S., underscoring demand for the marquee smartphone.
Shares in Hon Hai, the main assembler of Apple devices, climbed as much as 3.6 per cent in Taipei. TSMC, the U.S. company’s biggest chip supplier, rose as much as 2.5 per cent to a record. Other suppliers from AAC Technologies Holdings Inc. in Hong Kong to Lens Technology Co. in mainland China also advanced, tracking Apple’s own gains Friday.
Apple, which says demand for its signature gadget is “off the charts,” began taking orders for the iPhone X Friday and — within minutes — shipping times lengthened to as much as six weeks in the U.S. That suggested tight supply over the crucial holiday season, when retailers make the majority of their revenue. The U.S. company was also said to have struggled to make enough of its costliest device, in part because of quality issues with the sensors that make Face ID possible.
In Europe, shares in Austrianbased Apple supplier AMS gained as much as 5.5 per cent to 77.65 Swiss francs ($100) Tuesday in Zurich. Shares in Dialog Semiconductor rose as much as 6.8 per cent to € 43.14 ($64.33) on Monday in Frankfurt.
AMS produces optical sensors for mobile phones, while Dialog provides power-management chips to Apple.
The preorders situation is “easing concerns that demand for the iPhone X might not meet expectations,” Bloomberg said in a report.
“Telecom carrier reports of relatively weak demand for the iPhone 8 stoked these fears.”
Around the world, Apple fans posted images and comments online Friday about how they were planning to get their hands on one of the $1319 (or more) phones. In Hong Kong, the phone appeared to sell out less than half an hour after ordering began, with the online store there showing the phone “currently unavailable.” It was a similar story across Asia.
In the U.K., the device sold out within minutes. By mid-morning, customers were being told they would have to wait four to six weeks before the phone became available. And if New Yorkers didn’t stay up all night, they were likely out of luck. By early morning on the East Coast, Apple’s website was already registering a wait of as much as six weeks.
Apple was said to have struggled to build enough of its flagship handset, partly as a result of quality issues with sensors
Waiting several weeks for major new Apple devices has become common. Shipping times for the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, launched in 2014 and the previous end-to-end iPhone overhaul, extended to as much as four weeks in the hours after becoming available to preorder.
Apple typically takes a few weeks or months to reach a balance of supply and demand for major new iPhone launches.
The iPhone X has a crisper OLED screen with slimmer bezels, matching recent designs from Samsung Electronics, in addition to a unique facial-recognition scanner to unlock the phone rather than using a fingerprint. Apple struggled to manufacture aspects of the new features and the iPhone X’s Nov. 3 debut will be about six weeks after the arrival of the iPhone 8, which is a less sophisticated device.
“The Apple supply chain was strong this morning as the iPhone X sales are good,” said Allan Lin, an assistant vice-president at Concord Securities Corp.