Apple cuts orders for the iPhone SE 5G, while the 13 Pro and Pro Max find "unexpected" favor in 2022
Apple has reportedly had to make a return to the drawing board when it comes to its manufacturing orders for new iPhone 13-series units in the second quarter of 2022. It seems the Cupertino giant anticipated greater demand for cheaper Mini and vanilla variants compared to the higher-end Pro and Pro Max models; however, it now seems the opposite is the case.
It may have been reasonable for Apple to presume that iPhone customers would be more prudent than usual going into 2022, given the prevailing global economic conditions. Instead, however, Morgan Stanley is now quoted as saying that demand for the latest 13 series "exceeded expectations" in the first quarter of 2022, whereas that for the 'affordable' SE 5G (or SE 2022) has failed them.
Furthermore, it now seems that the 13 Pro and Pro Max are often out of stock with many US carriers, something that cannot be said for their other siblings. This might be a function of Apple's decision to order their production in relatively small numbers in the first place: 3.5 million of the Max variant and only 1 million of the 6.1-inch Pro.
However, it seems that consumer demand has panned out in almost the exactly opposite way (which, given that the same variants may be the last of their kind with notches, may prove ironic in the near future), prompting Apple to augment 13 Pro orders by 7 million, and those for the Pro Max by 3 million, for the second quarter of 2022 (2Q2022). By contrast, SE 2022 production is to be cut by 20%.
TheElec estimates that the new direction in Apple production will benefit PCB makers such as BH as well as display OEMs such as LG in the coming months. Shipments for the devices in question are projected to fall between the 48 and 51 million marks in 2Q2022, compared to 46 million for 2Q2021.