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iPhone 12 delay? Apple may hold 5G iPhone until 2021

Apple is reportedly planning to delay the launch of the iPhone 12 until 2021, which would mean no new flagship iPhone models this year.

Japanese news agency Nikkei is reporting the company is considering holding off on its usual September launch amid fears there wouldn’t be much demand for upgrades in the current climate.

According to a source, Apple is worried that the first 5G iPhone might fall flat considering consumers are likely to be getting back on their feet following the worst of the coronavirus outbreak (we hope).

There are also fears over Apple’s ability to produce enough of the iPhone 12 devices due to constraints within the supply chain. Just today there were reports that iPhone production in India had ground to a halt amid a lockdown in the country.

Related: Best iPhone 2020

Here’s how Nikkei (via MacRumors), which has a decent track record in this regard, phrases the ongoing discussions said to be happening at Apple:

“Supply chain constraint aside, Apple is concerned that the current situation would significantly lower consumer appetite to upgrade their phones, which could lead to a tame reception of the first 5G iPhone,” said a source with direct knowledge of the discussion. “They need the first ‌5G iPhone‌ to be a hit.”

A year without a new iPhone would undoubtedly be the most startling effect on the tech world, from a product perspective. The firm has launched new flagship handsets every year since the original iPhone arrived in 2007.

The report says Apple is considering delaying the launch “by months”, so it might be early 2021 before the iPhone 12 and the expected 5G modem becomes available. “Apple will make a final decision around May at the latest, given the fluid situation globally,” a person familiar with the matter told Nikkei.

Apple is still expected to drop the iPhone 9 (iPhone SE 2) at some point in the near future, although a recent event to announce the device may have been postponed.

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