Apple's 2020 5G iPhone: Components like Voice Coil Motors for Cameras & mmWave for communications could be in short supply
The latest supply chain rumor out today is that shipments of voice coil motors (VCMs) used in camera modules for Apple's upcoming 5G iPhones are likely to see a slowdown around the middle or the latter half of the second quarter, according to industry sources.
Industry sources further note that the new 5G iPhones will have a multi-camera design, and orders for VCMs were significant during the first quarter because of Apple's high estimation for shipments of the components. However, with Apple reportedly having reduced its shipment estimates in mid-April, VCM orders are expected to be seriously undermined.
The sources also claim that Apple may still unveil the 5G iPhones in 2020, but mass shipments for the new devices might not pick up until the first half of 2021, especially models supporting mmWave communication, as the pace on certification for antenna in package (AiP) for 5G has significantly decelerated.
VCMs used in iPhones' camera modules are primarily supplied by Japan-based Mitsumi and ALPS, while related Taiwan-based component suppliers also saw their first-quarter sales benefit from Apple's strong orders. However, they have begun turning conservative about their orders in the second quarter and are having no visibility for orders in the second half.
The Digitimes report lastly notes that the release of the second-generation iPhone SE could possibly cripple demand for high-end smartphones such as the 5G iPhones in 2020 as the coronavirus pandemic has seriously undermined consumers' purchasing in Europe and North America.