iPhone 13 could be in short supply this Christmas

Supply chain issues seem set to make the iPhone 13 tough to get hold of, with Tim Cook acknowledging issues

Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max on white background
(Image credit: Apple)

We’ve heard reports of possible iPhone 13 shortages, and now Apple’s shareholders have had the opportunity to grill CEO Tim Cook and other company executives over the company’s prospects directly. 

In the previous earnings Q3 earnings call, the company reckoned that supply constraints had cut revenue by as much as $6 billion, and it sounds like that could be worse this time around. “We estimate the impact from supply constraints will be larger during the December quarter,” said (opens in new tab)chief financial officer Luca Maestri during the call. 

Despite this, he stated that the company expected revenue to rise for each product category year-over-year except for the iPad, which would slip due to supply constraints.

When taking questions later, Cook stated that supply chain constraints were caused by two things: the chip shortages, and Covid disruption. With the latter of these “improved materially”, the problem this quarter will be down to chip shortages, he explained.

“For this quarter, we think that the primary cause of supply-chain-related shortages will be the chip shortage,” he told investors. “It will affect – it is affecting, I should say – pretty much most of our products currently... but from a demand point of view, demand is very robust.” 

When demand is high and supply is short, the result is shortages, and we’re already seeing the results of this in Apple’s long delivery times for key products. While a regular iPhone 13 should arrive within a week, the Pro models are listed as taking a month, and the wait for iPads and Apple Watches currently stretches into December.

The winter period is usually when Apple products — and especially iPhones — are in the most demand. So if you are planning on getting an iPhone 13 for Christmas, you may want to strike sooner, rather than later.