Putting any issues of security or privacy aside for a moment, one problem that we’ve heard has been plaguing the fingerprint scanner on Apple’s new iPhone 5S for months now is its scarcity. Back in July, there was talk that both the scanner and the phone’s LCD controller were causing Apple headaches, and about a month ago those rumors returned, along with the claim that Apple had dedicated a new engineering team to getting any scanner issues worked out. Well, maybe things will get better in time, but it sounds like Apple’s far from out of the woods yet, and a new analyst report is calling current yield rates of scanner fabrication “terrible.”
Supposedly, Apple will only be able to produce 5 to 10 million units during the current quarter. That’s compared to estimates for more like 20 million iPhone 5C models. Even moving forward, it sounds like Apple may still be struggling to address demand, with projections for 5S production to lag behind 5C production into the next quarter, as well.
This is affecting projections for Apple’s 2014 shipments, already being dialed-back by more than 10 million handsets. As a result, analysts are lowering earnings estimates and price targets for Apple stock.
These shortages in mind, maybe camping out at the Apple store might not seem like such a crazy idea this year.