With the Samsung Galaxy S8 out the door and impressing fans on both sides of the iOS / Android divide, the pressure is now on for Apple to deliver something truly special with this year's new iPhone models.
However, according to noted Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities, the Cupertino company may have a big problem on its hands.
According to his sources and estimates, the iPhone 8 is running two months behind schedule if it's to fulfil mass production supply requirements.
New hardware, new headaches
According to Kuo, the iPhone 8's "significant hardware upgrades" are to blame for the production slip, with the iPhone 8's significantly tweaked design causing headaches.
The usual August/ September ramp up in production as a result will likely slip to October or November, which could cause supply problems for customers at the busy Christmas period – and dampen Apple's holiday sales outlook.
It may be that the phone is still released in the normal September launch period, it just may be that stock will be limited to start with.
Kuo also predicts both the iPhone 7S and iPhone 7S Plus models will launch alongside the iPhone 8, and avoid the production issues mentioned above. But being relatively minor upgrades in the face of the 8, the expectation is consumers will hold fire and sit it out for the more impressive iPhone 8 model to hit shelves.
As a result, the analyst is now predicting Apple will sell 80-90 million handsets in the second half of the year, compared to the 110 million previously suggested. That's still a substantial number, but one that might make investors hold fire on adding that second swimming pool to their estates, at least before Christmas.
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