'Severe supply shortages': The iPhone 8 sounds like it will be hard to find

Apple is expected to launch a redesigned iPhone this fall, with a screen that covers nearly the entire front of the device.

But it’s increasingly sounding as if that redesigned iPhone may be delayed past Apple’s traditional September launch period.

The companies that make parts for Apple are suggesting that production of Apple’s redesigned “OLED” iPhone might not start until October or November, as opposed to August and September, as in previous years.

“While we believe the announcement and launch time of the new iPhones will be similar to previous ones, production ramp up of OLED iPhone could be delayed to as late as October-November compared to the usual ramp up period of August-September, due to increased production difficulty,” reliable analyst Ming-Chi Kuo writes in a note seen by MacRumors.

“In other words, severe supply shortages may persist for a while after the new models are launched, capping total shipments of new iPhones in 2H17,” the KGI Securities analyst continues.

Drexel Hamilton analyst Brian White has previously suggested that the OLED iPhone 8 could be delayed by several weeks, due to production challenges around Apple’s next-generation camera.

These rumours raise the possibility that Apple could three iPhones in September, including the redesigned OLED iPhone 8 and two models that resemble updated versions of the current iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.

But in this scenario, Apple would only put the two iPhone 7 successors on sale shortly thereafter, forcing customers to wait for or pre-order the high-end iPhone 8.

Here’s the state of the current rumours about what to expect from the new iPhones this fall:

  • One new model could have a screen that covers almost the entire front of the device. The iPhone’s screen, using OLED technology for the first time, could be as large as the screen on the iPhone 7 Plus but would fit into an iPhone 7-sized phone.
  • The double-lens camera on the upcoming redesigned iPhone could be oriented vertically instead of horizontally, as on the iPhone 7 Plus. The front-facing camera might also gain a second lens.
  • Apple plans to use faster chips using a “10-nanometre process” that improves efficiency over the “16-nanometre process” Apple currently uses for its processors.
  • The latest prototype of the redesigned iPhone 8 uses slightly curved glass on the front and back and is “similar conceptually” to the iPhone 4.
  • Two other new models could use the same screen technology and sizes as the current iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus.


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