Apple Online Store Imposes Purchase Restrictions on New MacBook Air, new iPad Pro, iPhones in Many Asian Countries [Update: Restrictions Lifted for iPhone]

Starting this week Apple has set purchase limits on its new iPad Pro and MacBook Air, iPhones, Mac mini on its online stores. The restrictions are imposed in many Asian countries including Taiwan, Singapore, Hong Kong, and China.

The limit is as follows, the new MacBook Air and Mac mini are limited to five orders per customer. Meanwhile, the new iPad Pro limit is set to two orders of 12.9-inch and two 11-inch models. Furthermore, Apple has also imposed purchase limitations of two iPhone 11 Pro, iPhone 11 Pro Max, iPhone 11, iPhone XR, iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus per customer. Thankfully, the limits do not apply to countries like the United States, Europe, and others.

Earlier this week Apple updated its MacBook Air lineup with faster processors from Intel and lowered the price tag to $999. The company claims that the new MacBook Air is twice as much faster as its predecessor. The top-end 10th gen Core i7 processor from Intel runs at 1.2GHz but can Turbo Boost to speeds of up to 3.8GHz. Meanwhile, the graphics performance is also said to be improved with the new Intel Iris Plus GPU. Most importantly, Apple has replaced the troublesome butterfly keyboard with a much more reliable Magic Keyboard on the new MacBook Air

Our Take

This is not the first time Apple has imposed purchase restrictions on its products in Asian countries. It is primarily done to combat the menace of the gray market. However this time around, Apple might have imposed restrictions to ensure smooth supply amid the Covid-19 outbreak.

The Covid-19 outbreak has adversely affected Apple in more than one way. The iPhone 9 launch is expected to be delayed, WWDC 2020 is a virtual event, and iPhone sales in China has crashed. It will be interesting to see how Apple will balance the demand and supply during such distraught times.

Do you think Apple’s online store purchase restriction is reasonable? Let us know in the comments below.

Update: Apple has lifted restrictions for buying iPhones from the online Apple Store. However, the company has retained restrictions for other products including iPad Pro, Mac mini, and MacBook Air.