The Apple Watch has been available for sale since April 24th, but it appears that orders for Apple's first ever smartwatch is taking longer than expected to arrive at buyers' hands (or wrists). The possible culprit for the shortage of supply? Taptic Engine components.
At least, according to a report published by the Wall Street Journal. As indicated in the news story, apparently there has been a shortage of the said Taptic Engine components due to some issues found in certain parts that are supplied by a single particular supplier. The author of the report further clarified that the supply of Apple Watches are tight because Apple did not ship any unit that has the defective component.
As for those who have already received their orders, they need not worry about potential issues in their Apple Watches. Based on the report, it is likely that Apple has detected the faulty components before any of the wearable devices were shipped to customers. As for those still waiting for their orders to arrive, this latest development will test their patience for a little while longer.
The Taptic Engine components are said to be produced by a certain China-based components manufacturer called AAC Technologies. After Apple had detected the issue, it immediately decided to switch to another supplier, Nidec Corp, which is based in Japan. Understandably, the sudden switch in suppliers has dramatically affected all production time tables, and in the process, changed all the delivery schedules of orders as well.
In case some are wondering, taptic engines play a critical part in making sure certain key features of the Apple Watch are functioning properly. They basically use a motor to imitate the feeling of being tapped or buzzed on the wrists, letting users discretely receive alerts for messages, or get directions when using Apple Maps on their wearable devices. Moreover, users also are able to send the feeling of their heartbeats to other Apple Watch users with the use of taptic engines.
Because Apple had discovered the faulty taptic engines before the Apple Watch was officially launched, the company will not be doing any recalls for its smartwatch. But as mentioned earlier, wait times have now stretched even longer. Still, some customers who ordered the device have begun receiving notifications that their orders have now been processed, which means it will not be long before their Apple Watches get delivered. But for many others (especially walk-in buyers), they may have to wait a little longer, even possibly until June before they can get their Apple Watches.
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