If you try to buy a new MacBook Pro right now there is a good chance that you will see delivery windows that stretch into the weeks. That’s thanks, in part, to COVID-19 lockdowns causing manufacturers to have to pause or slow down the building of the machines.
Now, a new report claims that we shouldn’t expect those companies to get back to pre-COVID levels until July at the earliest.
DigiTimes, citing industry sources, says that notebook manufacturers in Shanghai are now running at between 10 and 20% capacity. That’s the city where high-end MacBook Pro machines are built by Quanta Computers. Those machines currently have a delivery time of up to five weeks if you order today.
Overall notebook production in China, which mainly takes place in major coastal cities in eastern China, is unlikely to return to pre-lockdown levels until July, according to industry sources.
It’s thought that logistical problems and a shortage of workers are the reasons behind the slowdown of deliveries and it’s difficult to work around that. While Apple has factories building iPhones in multiple countries, all high-end MacBook Pro machines come from one place. When that place struggles for capacity, it impacts everyone and everything.
As for what Apple will do here, it isn’t clear. It’s possible that it could seek to diversify manufacturing beyond China, as it has done with other products. But that takes time and isn’t going to help in this instance especially.
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