According to the Wall Street Journal, Apple has cut orders for iPhone 5 screens and other components due to weaker than expected demand, apparently notifying suppliers last month:
Apple’s orders for iPhone 5 screens for the January-March quarter, for example, have dropped to roughly half of what the company had previously planned to order, two of the people said.
The Cupertino, Calif., company has also cut orders for components other than screens, according to one of the people.
Apple notified the suppliers of the order cut last month, the people said.
Sharp, Japan Display Co. and LG are the reported suppliers of iPhone 5 display panels, which are at half of what was previously expected. If these sources are correct, the lack of demand could be a response to the fact Apple faces more competition than ever when it comes to the iPhone.
The latest iPhone 5 launched in September with a new thinner, lighter design, support for LTE networks and a larger four-inch screen. Lines were also shorter this year than years past, hinting at less than normal demand. Other possible reasons for low iPhone 5 demand is could be the lacklustre update to iOS 6 and the fiasco with Apple Maps; it has resulted in many customers looking at alternatives, such as Android smartphones or Windows Phone.