Rosenblatt: iPhone XR cuts due to circuit board quality issues?

From a note to clients by Jun Zhang that landed on my desktop Wednesday:

After the first two weeks, we believe the iPhone XR sell-through rate continues to be weaker than we initially expected. This leads us to believe that Apply may begin another round of iPhone XR production cuts for C4Q. We believe Apple may reduce production for the iPhone XR by an additional 4-5 million units for C4Q. We also believe the company may increase iPhone X production by 1-2 million units due to iPhone X promotions for the holiday season by some telecos.

We also believe component pull-ins are slowing down this week. We believe some Printed Circuit Board (PCB) supplier shipments of HDI boards were quickly dropped this week. This may be attributable to quality issues from Skyworks PAs. We believe this potential round of iPhone XR production cuts by Apple may be attributable to the recently found PA quality issues.

We think it is rare for Apple to make such dramatic production changes before the holiday season. We also believe component inventory levels are not high at Apple. We will continue to track iPhone holiday season sell-through rates in order to see if the production cuts are more attributable to Skyworks’ PA quality issues or if Apple is taking a more conservative approach to prepare for further softness in demand.

My take: First I’ve heard of a problem with Skyworks’ boards.

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  1. Fred Stein said:
    Ugh, Aren’t we tired of XR rumors?

    Apple won’t ever give us visibility at even the aggregate iPhone level. So we’ll never resolve the rumor issue.

    But more to the point, the XR competes with many new and used iPhone options at that price band, many of which have telephoto, such as a used iPhone X. And, surely the XS Max’s is on a lot of holiday gift lists. Hence sales of this one model, XR, doesn’t mean much.

    November 7, 2018

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