Few days back, we reported that Apple had increased quality control standards to reduce the number of iPhone 5 units that are delivered with scratches right out of the box. This had resulted in the slowdown in production.
Wall Street Journal reports that an unnamed Foxconn (Apple’s manufacturing partner) official has explained the reason the reason for the shortage:
“The iPhone 5 is the most difficult device that Foxconn has ever assembled. To make it light and thin, the design is very complicated,” said an official at the company who declined to be named. “It takes time to learn how to make this new device. Practice makes perfect. Our productivity has been improving day by day.”
The official also confirmed that Foxconn had taken steps to address scratches on the metal casings of some new iPhones that were shipped. But he highlighted that iPhone 5 anodized alumimum coating makes it more susceptible to scratching.
“It’s always hard to satisfy both aesthetic needs and practical needs”
Image credit: iFixit
The Foxconn official also admitted that the conflict between assembly line workers and quality inspectors at its Zhengzhou site last month was partly due to the metal casing and other quality issues, but declined to provide more details about the incident.
The slowdown in production coupled with unprecedented demand for iPhone 5 has pushed shipping estimates to 3 to 4 weeks on Apple’s Online store.