Those dying to buy Apple's new bezel-less, OLED-sporting iPhone X would probably need to keep a constant watch on Apple's preorder page by Oct. 27.
Often-right tech analyst Ming-Chi Kuo of KGI Securities now speculates that the most expensive iPhone yet will probably cause Apple to encounter supply-and-demand imbalances. According to him, there will be far more people who would want to buy the iPhone X than Apple's supply chain can manage, at least initially.
If he's correct, then Apple customers are bound to experience long shipping waiting periods when preorders open next month.
iPhone X Demand To Surpass Supply
"We believe the fullscreen design and facial recognition features will drive replacement demand for the iPhone X," says Kuo. But because of supply constraints, it's unlikely Apple will match demand until the first half 2018.
In short, getting an iPhone X might prove difficult in the coming months. Perhaps even a large number of people who'll successfully secure a preorder might wait a long time before receiving their units.
iPhone X's Limited Supply Doubles As A Strategy, Says Analyst
In addition, Kuo thinks Apple decided to not open iPhone X for another six weeks because it doesn't want to cannibalize iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus sales. By contrast, preorders for both those phones have already begun. They will launch on Sept. 22 as upgrades to last year's iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, but some consider them less of an "iPhone 8" and effectively more of an "iPhone 7s."
Kuo previously said that Apple was producing up to 10,000 iPhone X units per day, but the number might increase as demand balloons and the company ramps up production. He said the iPhone X will remain in "severe short supply for a while."
In the end, it all makes sense. Apple would rather have the most loyal iPhone X buyers be the people holding out until October, ensuring that demand wouldn't surpass supply, while simultaneously pushing others who can't get a preorder to go for the iPhone 8 or iPhone 8 Plus instead. Apple wins in both situations.
There's some speculation on why Apple is having supply problems. For one, it's trying to look for other suppliers of OLED displays instead of relying solely on Samsung, some reports suggest. Also, there's an overwhelming demand for flash storage, even more so with the new iPhones having as much as 256 GB. Apple is also competing with the Switch, which also uses flash memory. Nintendo is also having supply problems, for the record.