While officially we still don’t know anything about the mainstream success of Apple’s first-ever OLED iPhone, the unofficial sales numbers, reports and revised forecasts are starting to pile up.

Until Thursday, February 1, when the latest Cupertino financial records will be released, it’s probably safe to describe iPhone X shipments over the recently-concluded holiday season as “slightly below expectations.”

But the Q1 2018 figures are the ones that will most likely make or break this first-generation “all-screen” device, and at least according to one extremely reliable source, they’re not pretty.

Make that two reputable business publications, as The Wall Street Journal today echoes yesterday’s Nikkei supply chain findings after verifying the information with a presumably different group of “people familiar with the matter.”

Basically, all signs seem to be pointing to only around 20 million iPhone X units being produced during the first three months of 2018, substantially down from Apple’s initial reported target of 40 mil or so.

A sudden production reduction of that magnitude would obviously hurt a long list of suppliers and component manufacturers, but one important Apple partner suggests the cut may not be “that great” after all.

Japan-based Murata Manufacturing Co. should know what it’s talking about, collaborating with both Apple and Samsung in recent years for the making of some of the world’s most popular smartphones.

Self-described as a “global leader in the design, manufacture and supply of advanced electronic materials, leading edge electronic components, and multi-functional, high-density modules”, Murata simply wants the public to know iPhone X production isn’t taking as great of a hit as all these other sources claim. Unfortunately, the company isn’t giving us a number. Is it 21 million instead of 20? 25? 30? We may have to wait until the end of March to know for sure.

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