Is iPad Mini Launch Already Doomed?
The iPad mini is a day old and yet to open for pre-orders, but there are already supply concerns for Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) brand new product going into the busy holiday shopping season. According to NPD DisplaySearch analyst Richard Shim, in the absence of Samsung as a supplier, one of Apple’s two manufacturers for the mini’s 7.9-inch display is having problems meeting planned yield rates.
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“We’re now starting to see the issues that [Apple] is having with Samsung,” Shim told CNET. “The problem is that AUO is a new supplier, and they’re not able to get to the volumes that Apple needs. So, essentially, there’s just one supplier,” he added.
According to the analyst, AUO has shipped just over 100,000 units, way short of the goal of 400,000 units this month. It is also scheduled to ship 800,000 units in November and 1 million units in December. LG Display shipped 300,000 panels in September, plans to add 1 million units in October, and reach 3 million in December.
While Samsung has publicly denied it was ending its supply relationship with Apple, Shim said there were some issues between the smartphone rivals. “Samsung and Apple appear to be winding down their relationship most likely due to the legal conflicts the two have been embroiled in recently,” he wrote in a blog post.
The iPad mini, launched on Tuesday with a 7.9-inch 1,024×768 display and a dual-core A5 processor, starts at $329. Shim expected it to sell well. “The new low price point is expected to appeal to a wider audience and drive up demand,” he wrote.