MacBook delay seems inevitable as Apple suppliers in China go into lockdown
A report from Nikkei Asia has described the issues facing Apple as Shanghai and many other Chinese cities implement lockdowns to prevent the further spread of COVID-19. Manufacturing plants and assemblers have had to stop their operations, with Apple’s supply chain becoming deeply affected. The final result may mean that rumored MacBook releases for 2022, such as the redesigned MacBook Air and new MacBook Pro 13 model, will find their scheduled launch dates abandoned.
Noted analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has opined that although the lockdowns will likely have major impacts on MacBook production, iPhone supply should be only partially troubled by current proceedings. Apparently, Foxconn has been able to offer support with iPhone and iPad production, thus softening the blow caused by Pegatron (iPhone assembler) and Compal Electronics (iPad manufacturer) closing down their operations.
However, a MacBook delay does seem to be on the cards as the lockdown has also caused the temporary closure of Quanta’s Shanghai plant. Quanta is a huge Taiwanese company that manufactures laptops for big names such as Apple, Dell, HP, Lenovo, and many others, so having to close its Shanghai site will have an impact on vital launch schedules for various household-name companies.
Crucially, Ming-Chi Kuo adds that Quanta is “almost the sole EMS supplier for MacBook” (EMS – Electronics Manufacturing Services), so depending on how much time these lockdowns consume, that long-awaited MacBook Air refresh may end up being even more long-awaited. Any MacBook productions delays are also likely to affect the release of Apple M2 SoC variants of the MacBook Pro laptops.
(2/2) Quanta is almost the sole EMS supplier for MacBook, so among Apple's main products, MacBook has been the most affected amid China lockdowns due to Quanta's halted production.— 郭明錤 (Ming-Chi Kuo) (@mingchikuo) April 12, 2022