Apple Inc.’s suppliers are preparing to produce components for up to 75 million new iPhones in 2019’s second half, roughly the same number as a year earlier, according to people familiar with the matter.
The volumes planned for the next iPhone launch cycle would signal a steady demand for the company’s most important product, despite U.S.-China trade tensions and a decline in the overall smartphone market. The Cupertino, California-based technology giant stopped divulging iPhone shipment numbers in the holiday quarter last year as unit growth turned negative and started providing metrics to highlight the growth of services such as Apple Music. Analysts estimate Apple sold 70 million to 80 million new iPhones in the second half of last year.
The company’s Asian suppliers are gearing up to produce components for three new iPhone models to meet holiday-season demand, the people said, asking not to be identified citing internal estimates. The U.S. company’s Asian partners could ramp production up to 80 million new phones if needed, one of the people said. Main iPhone assembler Foxconn Technology Group has stepped up hiring in Shenzhen and is offering staff about 10% more than a year ago to secure a peak-period workforce, another person familiar with the matter said.
The iPhone assembler Pegatron Corp. added to gains and closed 2.3% higher, while lens maker Largan Precision Co. rose 2.6%. Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. pared earlier losses and closed unchanged.
Apple has announced new iPhones each September since 2012, and the latest models typically go on sale in the final weeks of that month. The company reports third-quarter earnings on July 30, and the firm’s guidance could indicate its expectations for iPhone sales at the end of the fourth quarter ending in September. Apple still provides iPhone revenue figures, with the company generating $52 billion from iPhones last holiday quarter, a 15% decline, and $37 billion from new iPhones in the previous fourth quarter, a 27% increase. Those numbers, however, include a mix of both last year’s new models and earlier versions of the iPhone.