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Vietnam COVID outbreak delays iPhone 13 orders

Apple's new iPhone 13 range is reportedly seeing longer than usual delivery times worldwide because a coronavirus spike is disrupting component assemblers in Vietnam.

The iPhone 13 Pro Max, went on backorder within an hour of preorders starting, and now most of the range is delayed into middle or late October. A new report, however, says that the shipping is being affected by production delays, as much as demand.

According to Nikkei Asia, a significant number of camera components are assembled in Vietnam. The country is currently the epicenter of a coronavirus outbreak.

"Assemblers can still produce the new iPhones, but there's a supply gap [in] that the inventories of the camera modules are running low," an unnamed supply chain executive told Nikkei Asia. "There's nothing we can do but to monitor the situation in Vietnam every day and wait for them to ramp up the output."

Contributing to the issue is that more iPhone 13 models now contain the sensor-shift optical image stabilization that was previously confined to the iPhone 12 Pro Max. It's meant that production quantity of the component has had to be ramped up.

Nikkei Asia says that the delays may start to shorten in mid-October as production has been gradually resuming in one key facility in southern Vietnam.

Currently, US buyers who order the iPhone 13 Pro or iPhone 13 Pro, will see an earliest expected delivery date of October 28. Buyers ordering the iPhone 13 should get it from October 18, and iPhone 13 mini is typically shipping from October 12.

Separately, workers in Vietnam have been reported to be sleeping on factory floors, specifically to guard against coronavirus outbreaks.