Apple Watch supplies limited due to Taptic Engine manufacturing issues

Apple Watch Sport Space Gray

The Apple Watch is a powerful little device that people wear on their wrist, with a ton of features to talk about, but one of those is apparently causing some supply issues for the wearable.

It’s been no surprise to anyone since April 10 that demand for the Watch is certainly much higher than what’s currently available to sell, so shipping times for the smartwatch are pushed back well into June. While Apple still feels like it is on track to start selling the Watch in other countries beginning in June, many are just waiting to get the wearable they already ordered.

Now, according to a report published recently by the Wall Street Journal, the issues causing supply shortages for the Watch may focus entirely on the Taptic Engine within the device. The report indicates that the specific part is manufactured by two separate companies, and the Taptic Engine manufactured by one of them was “found to be defective” over time:

After mass production began in February, reliability testing revealed that some taptic engines supplied by AAC Technologies Holdings Inc., of Shenzhen, China, started to break down over time, the people familiar with the matter said. One of those people said Apple scrapped some completed watches as a result.

Scrapping an unknown amount of already completed Watches is a hard move to make, especially when Apple was unable to recoup those losses from the other manufacturer. That other supplier is based in Japan and did not have the same issues with long-term failures, so the majority of Taptic Engine manufacturing is happening there.

Apple is said to be considering bringing Foxconn into the manufacturing process for the Watch, but that might not begin until the tail-end of 2015, so it could be quite some time before Watch stock balances out.

[via The Wall Street Journal]