It is not today, the news about production problems and possibility of lack of stock or even the delay in launching the iPhone 8 appear at least once a week. For it seems that the production is not getting a good rhythm, and a new problem has been reported in the last days of the second week of July.
The issue is now quite specific, with a key part in the production of the new OLED panels that will integrate the new smartphone. And the problem appears even if Apple offers help to suppliers including buying and lending the machines needed for production.
According to information from industry sources, one of the three companies that would provide a Flexible Printed Circuit Board (RFPCB), as we will call it from now on, has fallen behind and will not be able to deliver the parts for iPhone 8.
The alleged reason is that the quitting manufacturer, the only Taiwanese among the three suppliers of the RFPCB, would not be able to supply parts with the quality demanded by Apple, in addition to the low profitability, according to some sources – information not officially confirmed.
South Korean Domain
This board is a kind of update of the rigid or flexible PCB already used in the market. And it’s harder to manufacture, more expensive. This explains, in parts, the rumors of a smartphone that exceeds $1,000 at launch.
To meet the losses, Apple is supporting the other two suppliers, both Koreans, to strengthen production – one source was quoted as saying.
According to reports, Apple expects to acquire 100 million RFPCBs this year alone. The companies responsible for supply are Interflex and Youngpoong Electronics, but Apple is looking for a third manufacturer, as well. And it must be more of a Korean.
South Korean vendors are likely to dominate the iPhone production line as of this year, and should hold that position in the near future. The companies of the Asian country have more experience and knowledge in the manufacture of parts for mobile devices and electronics in general.