Apple’s plan to increase iPhone production by 10 percent by the middle of this year is likely to be hindered by a coronavirus outbreak that is spreading in China.
The US tech giant has asked its suppliers, many of whom have manufacturing centres in China, to make up to 80 million iPhones in the first half of 2020, the Nikkei Asian Review reported, citing sources familiar with Apple’s plans.
Apple has ordered up to 65 million old iPhones and a maximum of 15 million units of the latest models planned to be launched in March.
However, mass production which will begin in the third week of February is likely to be delayed due to a coronavirus outbreak originating in China.
So far, the coronavirus outbreak has killed more than 100 people and infected more than 4,500 people in China, leaving tens of millions of people unable to go anywhere during the Lunar New Year holiday and destabilizing the global market.
Last October, the Nikkei Asian Review reported that Apple asked suppliers to increase the production of the iPhone 11 model to 8 million units, or 10 percent, making the demand for the latest version of Apple’s smartphone increase.