5G-capable iPhone 12 still slated for fall 2020 launch

Factories reach full staffing, solidifying the 5G-capable iPhone 12’s launch plans

Foxconn, Apple’s most important manufacturing partner, has reassured investors the latest 5G-enabled iPhones remain ready for a fall 2020 launch despite the coronavirus pandemic, according to Bloomberg

Foxconn, the primary manufacturer of the world’s iPhone supply, struggled through much of February after the outbreak delayed the return of the workers needed to assemble Apple’s smartphone. It’s since resumed normal operations and has reached full staffing levels earlier than predicted. 

The monthlong hiatus cast doubt on Apple’s launch schedule, but with the first trial assembly lines set to ramp up in June, investor relations chief Alex Yang is confident Foxconn can meet the deadline for a fall launch.

“We and the customer’s engineers are trying to catch up the missing gap, after we lost some days due to travel ban. There’s opportunity and possibility that we might catch up,” Yang said in a private conference call with investors. “But if there’s a further delay in the next few weeks, months, then you probably have to reconsider launching time. It’s still possible.”

The 5G-ready iPhone 12 lineup is expected to include four models, and the latest reports indicate they will feature OLED displays and redesigned chassis with squared-off edges. 

Experts believe the iPhone 12, Apple’s signature mobile device, will feature the company’s most important addition: The ability to connect to the 5G wireless network. While Samsung and Huawei began selling 5G devices last year, the iPhone 12 will be the first 5G-equipped device in Apple’s product lineup.

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