Friday, March 18, 2011, 09:00 am PT (12:00 pm ET)
Apple has enough iPad 2 components to maintain production for 2-3 weeksApple, along with its Taiwanese manufacturing partner Foxconn, has stockpiled enough components to continue to assemble new iPad 2s for at least another 2 to 3 weeks before they'd face a stockout that would halt production should the situation in Japan not improve, according to a published report.
Although it declined to comment on specific clients, Foxconn Electronics has reportedly emphasized that it will not see any component shortages in the short term, adding that it has already prepared backup suppliers for parts used to manufacture its customers' products even as Japan's earthquake has caused shortages of components throughout the industry.
Even if component supplies do fall into shortage, Foxconn's capability of securing supply resources is still much better than its competitors, DigiTimes cites unnamed representatives of the company as saying. It added that "market watchers" are also pointing out that Foxconn should still have "about 2-3 weeks of component inventory left as IT players normally keep a certain level of inventory on hand for safety."
The iPhone and iPad manufacturer has reportedly been investigating the inventory levels of its component supply subsidiaries and reporting back to clients like Apple, all the while simultaneously activating its backup plans, those same market watchers pointed out. These plans reportedly include "increasing their orders to second-tier suppliers and finding other supply sources and replacement components."
Those same people also vouched their belief that if Japan's power brownout policy and radiation pollution can be resolved within a month, allowing affected plants to start operating, the problem should not land a material blow to Foxconn or the electronics makers it services. However, should Japan's problems worsen, every industry worldwide will be affected, they added.
Should a recent iSuppli report be believed, Apple and Foxconn may be most concerned about five specific iPad 2 components sourced from Japan, including three believed to be supplied exclusively by component makers based out of the region: an electronic compass, the touch screen overlay glass, and the battery.
An earlier report from PiperJaffray noted that the shutdown of at least two of Apple's Japanese component suppliers is likely to create shortages of the iPad 2 — as well as the iPhone 4 — into the June quarter.
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