By now, we are all well aware of the delays surrounding shipments of Apple’s new wearable device. Part of the slow shipping times has been blamed on difficulties with one manufacturer of the taptic motor crucial to Apple Watch. A number of motors produced by AAC Technologies supposedly failed during reliability testing. However, a recent report from DigiTimes points to yet another delaying factor. According to the report, Quanta Computer faced serious labor shortages in February that left the manufacturer unable to deliver more than limited shipments in the first quarter.
Quanta Computer’s vice chairman CC Leung, without naming Apple specifically, said that while the wearable device was a challenge during February’s Lunar New Year holidays, the manufacturer is caught up now and should see increased production in the future.
Because of labor shortages during the Lunar New Year holidays, Quanta was forced to borrow manpower from other manufacturers and was only able to deliver limited shipments in the first quarter. However, Quanta already has sufficient capacity to manufacture all the orders and should see a giant contribution from its wearable device business in the second quarter.
While Leung would not state the name of its client or its products, the executive did note that “the wearable device is unlike the smartwatches it produced before and has a lot of functions in it and its client is satisfied with the product.”
It seems odd that such a manpower shortage would not have been foreseen, given Apple’s expertise and track record in dealing with Chinese manufacturers. Perhaps Cupertino was so secretive about the launch date for Apple Watch that the tech giant did not provide its manufacturers enough notice about when the wearable device would need to start production. If Quanta is truly caught up now, though, that hopefully means that shipment dates will become shorter in the near future.