Reuters (opens in a new tab) reports that manufacturing has slowed at Apple’s key assembly factories in China, and we’re seeing the best iphone models with significant limitations and even month-long shipping delays.
Apparently, Foxconn, the main Apple manufacturer in China, has seen delays caused by COVID-19 and the country’s strict policies to curb the spread of the virus. During Apple’s most recent earnings call, according to Business Insider (opens in a new tab)Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook blamed the delay in iPhone sales on supply chain issues, saying “we’re still tight today, so we’re working very hard to meet demand.”
We review all models Apple iPhone 14 available today, including iPhone 14 plus, the iPhone 14 Pro and the Pro Max, to see what we can buy today in the Apple web store. We found that the two least expensive iPhone models, the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus, are available in all storage capacities and all colors. We can ship one today or pick one up at a store near you.
the iPhone 14 ProMax and the Pro models are much harder to find, at least if you’re picky about color or storage, or both. All iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max devices have a delivery time between November 23 and December 1. Apple seems confident that iPhones will ship well before the holiday season, but not in time for Thanksgiving.
There are also iPhone 14 Pro models in stock at our local stores, but only sporadically. Our US office is based in the New York City area, and we are surveying stores in the New York suburbs to the north of the city.
If we want an iPhone 14 Pro in Deep Purple, a store near me has a 128GB model available and another Apple Store has the 256GB model. Larger 512 and 1TB models are not available at stores near you. Deep Purple is the most widely available iPhone 14 Pro model among the dozen stores we surveyed.
There are two stores that have a 1TB iPhone 14 Pro model but only in the gold color. No other color in the highest capacity is now available in stores. In fact, the only gold iPhone 14 Pro that we can find in stores is that 1TB model.
If you’re looking for an iPhone 14 Pro Max, you’ll have an easier time finding the phone if you opt for a larger storage capacity. A purple 14 Pro Max device can be found in stores today in all capacities except 128GB. You can get up to 1TB right now.
In fact, we found the 1TB iPhone 14 Pro Max available in all colors except silver. For the silver device, we only find a 256 GB model available. With a 256GB capacity, all iPhone 14 Pro Max colors are available for store pickup today at stores near us.
What is the end result? Every iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max color — and every storage capacity — is available to pick up somewhere, but you might have a hard time finding your favorite permutation. The iPhone 14 Pro is easier to find in purple. The iPhone 14 Pro Max is easier to find if you’re willing to spend $1,599 today to buy the 1TB model.
Analysis: What are we supposed to do now?!
This supply problem is surprising, especially for Apple. Apple CEO Tim Cook was the company’s former supply chain expert and has steered Apple’s ship toward incredibly tight control over inventory. Only a global pandemic and catastrophe could prevent Apple from meeting demand expectations with Cook in charge.
If you have to settle, we highly recommend getting the storage capacity you want rather than color. You can always get a nice case for your phone or stick a fancy sticker on it. You won’t be able to add more space for valuable videos and TV shows later.
Also, keep in mind that if you break your iPhone and need to replace it, the fastest replacement option may not be the color you purchased. If you want to replace a broken purple iPhone 14 Pro quickly, you may end up with black space eventually anyway. Color is more important in the Apple Store, not in your pocket.
As you consider your options, you may want to see our list of all the best smartphones.