A new report from Taiwan is claiming that due to COVID-19, many office workers and students are working remotely from their homes and this is causing a rise in iPad sales. Yet ODMs' production are being impacted by shortages of raw materials, components and labor.
E-commerce platforms are now the main conduit for consumers to buy tablets as most physical stores can hardly resume normal operations, but as tablets have sold out on many of these online shopping platforms, their prices have also gone up.
The platforms now sell 32GB and 128GB 10.2-inch iPad devices at CNY2,499 (US$355.5) and CNY3,099 (US$441 per unit, respectively, CNY200 (US$28) and CNY100 (US$14) higher than offered at Apple stores for corresponding models.
Industry sources said as most ODMs' capacity utilization can reach, at most, half of regular levels and can hardly ramp up fast in the short term, tablet shortages may linger for a while.
Apple iPads are assembled by Taiwan-based Compal Electronics and Foxconn at their plants in China's southwestern city of Chengdu, with the former responsible for entry-level iPads and the latter for higher-end models iPad Pro, iPad Air and iPad mini. Their plants are running at a capacity utilization of around 30%.
As for Huawei tablets, they’re mainly manufactured by Chinese DOMs Wingtech, Longcheer and Huaqin, whose plants, mostly in Guangdong province and eastern China, are running at 50-60%.