back to article Squeaky bum time for Apple: It hasn’t made enough iPhone 7 Pluses

Santa may have an empty sack this Christmas, crushing the dreams of fanbois (and fanfilles). Apple admitted yesterday it was unable to meet the demand for its iPhone 7. Six weeks after the launch, Apple’s own online store is still showing long delays for several configurations of the iPhone 7. These will continue into December …

  1. Lee D Silver badge

    "What went wrong?"

    Usual story.

    Nothing. We can now officially claim that we sold-out.

  2. Old Timer

    Pray tell why the home button is better on a 6 or indeed why a headphone jack matters when every other Android vendor is moving to USB for audio.

    More mindless Apple bashing from The Reg. Bring back MMM

    1. Darryl

      So saying the Apple iPhone 6 has a better button than the Apple iPhone 7 is now Apple bashing? And pointing out that the iPhone 6 has a feature that has been removed on the iPhone 7?

      We're going to need some sort of map or chart

      1. 404 Silver badge

        'We're going to need some sort of map or chart'

        A 'safe space' more likely, might be offended and need counseling.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "And pointing out that the iPhone 6 has a feature that has been removed on the iPhone 7?"

        It's not a feature, it's a flaw. And if iPhone 6 owners aren't willing to honour the memory of Our Jobs by buying the latest iPhone 7, they should at least have the Courage to remove it themselves.

        1. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

          If Jobs had still been around he would simply have made the engineers come up with a jack body that is smaller but still accepts the 3.5mm plug. Obviously the available off-the-shelf solutions weren't that good.

          Instead they decided to revert back to some 1998 Nokia design. FFS.

    2. death&taxes

      Dear Old Timer,

      As one dedicated fanboi to another I think you might have been a mite over-sensitive there. I don't mind too much personally but it does make us all look a bit silly, and you know how much the droidboys enjoy that.

      All the best,

      Your iBuddy.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I actually prefer the new button on the iPhone 7 than the 6. Touch ID works a lot better as well (more reliable and faster, pretty much instant)

      The headphone jack issue is not an issue, just stick the dongle on the headphones. Adds practically no weight. Big hoo ha about nothing that one.Charging at same time as listening can be an issue but battery life is so good only need to charge overnight anyway.

    4. Gene Cash Silver badge

      when every other Android vendor is moving to USB for audio

      Ah, but I'll be buying the Android phones that still have a headphone jack. And bonus for removable media or battery. I'm not limited by what Tim Cook decides in a meeting.

    5. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge

      every other Android vendor

      Huh?

    6. john devoy

      A couple removed their headphone jack, most new androids still have it.

  3. Charlie Clark Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    “Can’t meet demand” is an ambiguous term. It may mean that demand is genuinely greater than expected. Or it may indicate supply issues

    I think you may have nailed it. Whereas Apple has historically pursued a strategy of a limited a bouquet of products – driven by aspiration and tailored to price – the recent move into fashion accessories has encouraged the tyranny of choice. This contains the risks of lower margins due to more complicated inventory management and the attendant supply chain problems. They've historically been amazing at anticipating customer demand. Now if they ramp up production too much they risk sitting on too much inventory at the start of 2017.

  4. Greg 24

    Eh?

    "Apple retail staff tell us all models are available on the Store premises" so without having to actually walk in to one of the shiny temples does anyone know if I could go and buy a 7 plus today in store? If so, then this story is meaningless and if not why are they saying otherwise?

  5. Dan 55 Silver badge
    Meh

    Can't win

    If Apple did produce just enough stock of iPhone 7 Pluses and had anticipated the rush from ex-Note 7 owners, we'd be having to read conspiracy theories.

  6. EddieD

    Superior home button?

    I thought the new button, which required the omission of standard headphone jack, was the canine cojones?

  7. AndyS

    Oh dear.

    Never mind.

  8. tiggity Silver badge

    Pixel

    Worth noting that Pixel can be purchased in UK direct from Google (with obviously a bit of delay for delivery to arrive) - just like the Nexus used to be (all my Google phone purchases have been from Google rather than 3rd party resellers)

    1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

      Re: Pixel

      But does your average punter know that? Probably not.

      Does the average punter even know about the Pixel? Your guess is as good as mine.

      Go into CPW [1] and what do you see? Almost wall to wall Samsung.

      So what make of phone will the average punter leave with? Samsung.

      [1] despite me telling the CPW droid several times that there is no EE 3G let alone 4G available at my home he still tried to flog me a Galaxy 7 on EE on a 2 year contract. no sale.

      1. Danny 14 Silver badge

        Re: Pixel

        Youre a techie and you voluntarily went to a cpw shop?

        My god man.

        1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

          Re: Pixel

          I go to fondle the new tech before ordering online (possibly utilising the click and collect option). I object to some PFY asking if I need help every 2 minutes.

        2. katrinab Silver badge

          Re: Pixel

          When I bought my last Samsung, back in the days when the Note 2 was the latest model, Carphone Warehouse was actually the cheapest supplier.

  9. Sooty

    from what i have heard

    The 6s has had something of a resurgence, and people are wanting those more than the 7 while they can still get them.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Uh huh

    Sounds like the classic "reduce (reported) supply to increase (perceived) demand" to me...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Sounds like the classic

      Sounds like some classic "no evidence to back me up whatsoever so I'd better post anon" bullshit to me.

      Has there ever been any actual evidence of anyone doing this reportedly common "reduce supply to increase demand" trick?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Sounds like the classic

        *cough* De Beers *cough*

        1. Doc Ock

          Re: Sounds like the classic

          Jumping on the bandwaggon

          *cough* OPEC *cough*

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Sounds like the classic

            Doesn't increase demand, just increases the price. Apple haven't (at least, not yet) attempted to raise the price as a result of the short supply.

            As such, it makes no economic sense to reduce supply if it won't (a) increase ultimate demand and income; or (b) allow an increase in unit price. Apple would, just IMHO, rather flog you one now if they have one, so you don't decide to buy something else.

            So no doubt tongue in cheek, but seriously, probably a component shortage of some sort.

            1. Darryl

              Re: Sounds like the classic

              Maybe it makes no economic sense, but I suspect a few headlines saying "iPhones sold out!! Go stand in line at the nearest Apple store ASAP!!" are pretty good for business

        2. I_am_Chris

          Re: Sounds like the classic

          OPEC

  11. El_Fev

    Samsung

    What a piece of cack lol I notice all the people that went on and on about bumpergate seem to be very quite!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Samsung

      Quite what?

      1. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

        Re: Samsung

        quite annoyed?

    2. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge

      Here's the thing, right...

      Samsung isn't the only Android game in town.

      Even if it was, it wouldn't be relevant anyway. Much like the fact that (and I apologise in advance for referencing politics) you can make fun of Donald Trump without being a supporter of Hillary Clinton, you don't have to be a Samsung fanboy to extract amusement from Apple's blunders.

      Many of us, I'm sure, find Samsung's blunders equally amusing.

      And were you tracking what "all the people that went on and on about bumpergate" said before and since?

      1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Re: Here's the thing, right...

        Samsung isn't the only Android game in town.

        Indeed (pats shiny new OnePlus 3)

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Superior home button?

    What's wrong with the new one? I like it - nothing to wear out.

    1. Will Godfrey Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: Superior home button?

      Wow! You mean they've done away with the battery?

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I got one same day just last week

    There are plenty of stock for business customers, i managed to get one same day last week after the website reported 3-4 weeks wait for normal customers.

  14. Chad H.

    Of all the problems you can have, not being able to make enough devices is a very good one to have.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Depends. If you can make 10 a day but could sell 100 then you're not making the profit you need to develop the next one before the current one is old-hat (and sales fall).

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "Depends. If you can make 10 a day but could sell 100 then you're not making the profit you need to develop the next one before the current one is old-hat (and sales fall)."

        Correct. Just once in my life, a long time ago, have I been in the position of having a one year lead over the competition and being supply limited, depending on a manufacturing system we had co-developed with a German company and running 140 hours a week.

        The local MD dithered and the big boss from the US came over. He looked at the numbers. "half a million bucks? Give me the capex, I'll sign it now, get over to Germany and give them a poke."

        When a genuine opportunity knocks, only a fool does not open the door.

  15. AMBxx Silver badge
    Mushroom

    Given the choice

    If I had a choice of missing targets because I'd not made enough stuff or missing them because the product explodes, I'd go for the former every time!

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    3-4 weeks is in still time for Christmas...

    I have no doubt that the Samsung problems have increased the demand for iPhones, but all this amounts to is "don't wait until December to buy your Christmas presents".

    The iPhone 7 has only been out for a couple of months - I'm sure there'll be loads in stock come January...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: 3-4 weeks is in still time for Christmas...

      Don't you mean there'll be loads of stock come Boxing Day?

    2. Jeffrey Nonken Silver badge

      Re: 3-4 weeks is in still time for Christmas...

      It's not December yet.

  17. Esme

    'ang abaht..

    "..crushing the dreams of fanbois (and fanfilles). "

    If it's yer French we're considering 'ere, then either it should be fangarcons and fanfilles, or given that bois means wood (as in small collection of trees) in French, then presumably the female version would be fanfleurs or fanbuissons depending on which inappropriate female stereotype loosely transliterated into French you want to go with.

    </nitpicking> <grin>

  18. Frank N. Stein

    Hmm?

    Apple isn't going to leave evidence of that. Besides, every company who's selling something is honest and trustworthy, right? Noone uses supply chain tricks to stock product demand, do they?

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    And with Google moving to exact same pricing as iPhones with the Pixel cant really be said now that iPhones are the "expensive" option.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Perfection is worth the wait

    see title

  21. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

    “Can’t meet demand” is an ambiguous term. It may mean that demand is genuinely greater than expected. Or it may indicate supply issues, such as the shortage of a particular component.

    A particular component... like, maybe, a battery that is well behaved?

  22. DougS Silver badge

    Maybe the supply shortage is BECAUSE of Samsung

    I don't really the buy the "iPhone 7 plus is an alternative to the Note 7" since it implies the customer was not really invested in Android, but to the extent that Samsung defectors look at Apple, that would contribute towards the shortage of iPhone 7 pluses. Maybe they would only have a 1-2 week delay instead of 3-4 weeks if Note 7s had not been blowing up, who knows?

  23. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
    Happy

    Simple

    Apple needs to produce more phones

    Samsung has under-utilised phone production lines

    They should talk

  24. Don The Elder

    Supply shortages

    There really are random shortages, thanks to Hanjin's bankruptcy. It's bad enough that the port holding your cargo expects you to pay a huge surcharge to release it, but how about the containers 6 layers down? If you were the fourth stop of a ship being held at the first PoC, how can you even find out where you have to call? And you may not even know that it is on a Hanjin transport ship if you didn't book directly with them. Maybe it's still on the dock somewhere, waiting for the Mary Celeste. Gonna' be fun in January, trying to convince the manufacturer that you can't pay the bill for something you couldn't sell!

  25. dave 93

    Demand continues to outstrip supply - Tim Cook

    Android users continue to live in parallel reality

    People just love their iPhones!

    El Reg hacks continue to obfuscate the fact that they all use iPhones & Macs to run the site - lol

  26. dave 93
    FAIL

    45.5 million iPhone 7s sold in six weeks

    Yeah, I'm sure Apple are really, really worried - especially with Samsung Galaxy Note's red-hot performance!

    Andrew, what phone is in your pocket? Care to tell us...

  27. D@v3

    managing desire

    What if, with all the fancy colours and different storage options, they just haven't been able to predict well enough which combinations are going to sell, well, and as a result have a load of 128gb pink ones no one wants, but not enough of the, errr, 32gb white ones that everyone is trying to get hold of .

    Back when all the iPhones were black and only came in a couple of storage options, it was easy, but with each iteration there have become more 'options' especially with the '+' models as well. (28 different models)

    1. davemcwish

      Re: managing desire

      'a load of 128gb pink ones no one wants' - I'll give one of these unwanted a good home as long as we agree to not charge each other.

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