Customers will experience longer wait times, according to Apple, because the plant in China is operating at reduced capacity. Apple has stated that it expects fewer iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone Pro Max shipments than previously estimated due to COVID-19 restrictions temporarily disrupting production at a Zhengzhou, China assembly facility.
Apple said in a statement, “The facility is currently operating at significantly reduced capacity.” “Customers will experience longer wait times to receive their new products.”
Its main Zhengzhou plant in central China, which employs approximately 200,000 people, has been rocked by frustration over stringent measures to combat the spread of COVID-19, with many workers fleeing the site.
Separately, Foxconn, Apple’s largest iPhone manufacturer, said on Monday that it was working to resume full production at a major plant in Zhengzhou, China, that had been impacted by COVID-19 curbs, and revised its fourth-quarter outlook straight down.
The impact on production comes at a traditionally busy time for electronics manufacturers ahead of the year-end holiday season, which is also a busy time for consumer goods vendors such as Apple.
The majority of Apple’s new phones, including the new iPhone 14, are manufactured at Foxconn’s Zhengzhou plant, which employs approximately 200,000 people.
The Zhengzhou Airport Economy Zone in central China announced that the 415-square-kilometer industrial park that houses the plant has been placed under China’s lowest “static management” tier of lockdown until midday on November 9.
Foxconn announced new COVID-19 measures for the Zhengzhou plant, including the relocation of all working employees into three dormitories.
According to an official statement, residents in the area, which is about 16 miles south-east of Zhengzhou, are prohibited from leaving their homes and must be PCR tested once a day. Public transportation has been halted, and only approved vehicles are permitted on the roads. Other measures included the closure of non-essential offices, shops, and services.
The statement stated that any violations of the rules would be “severely dealt with” by the police and urged people to work together to “score victory in this district’s struggle against the epidemic.”
Workers were filmed fleeing the site in late October after complaining about their treatment and provisions on social media. To prevent the spread of the virus, nearby cities have devised plans to isolate migrant workers fleeing to their hometowns.
Zhengzhou, a city of nearly 13 million people, is struggling to contain its worst outbreak in months while maintaining a stable economy.
China reported 5,496 new locally transmitted COVID-19 cases on November 6th, the most since 2 May, when the country’s commercial capital of Shanghai was placed under a crushing lockdown due to the country’s worst outbreak.
Despite the ongoing disruption to businesses and international supply chains, China is the last major economy committed to annihilating COVID outbreaks as they occur, imposing emergency lockdowns, mass testing, and lengthy quarantines.
Authorities have shot down speculation that the policy might be relaxed, with National Health Commission spokesperson Mi Feng stating that Beijing would “stick unswervingly to … the overall policy of dynamic zero-Covid.”