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Apple is buying its own machinery to get the iPhone 8 ready on time

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Sounds like Apple is having to pull out all the stops to get the iPhone 8 ready on time: a new report from Asia says the company has started buying and leasing out its own manufacturing equipment in a bid to make sure it's got enough phone parts to keep up with expected demand.

That's according to The Korea Herald (opens in new tab), usually a fairly reliable source of insider Apple info from the supply chain. The Herald says Apple's new machinery is responsible for making rigid flexible printed circuit boards (RFPCBs) for the guts of the phone and that one board supplier has already pulled out of its agreement.

The move to buy the equipment, costing tens of millions of dollars, is apparently part of a bid to help Apple's remaining suppliers deal with complicated production challenges and schedules. In other words, Apple's feeling the pressure.

Wait for it

What does this mean for all of us at the other end of the production line? It adds more fuel to the rumor that the iPhone 8 is going to be delayed or at least available in very limited quantities this September.

We're looking at a phone that's definitely going to be worth waiting for though: a 5.8-inch, edge-to-edge screen that hides the Touch ID fingerprint sensor under the display, extra augmented reality features in the camera, wireless charging, advanced face recognition and plenty more besides.

All of this takes a lot of engineering effort and we've heard word that the wireless charging and facial recognition features aren't going to be ready on time. With only a couple of months until the usual iPhone launch date, it's a race against time.

David Nield
David Nield

Dave is a freelance tech journalist who has been writing about gadgets, apps and the web for more than two decades. Based out of Stockport, England, on TechRadar you'll find him covering news, features and reviews, particularly for phones, tablets and wearables. Working to ensure our breaking news coverage is the best in the business over weekends, David also has bylines at Gizmodo, T3, PopSci and a few other places besides, as well as being many years editing the likes of PC Explorer and The Hardware Handbook.