It’s the same story pretty much every year. Apple is struggling to meet high demand for its latest flagship, as customers prepare to open their wallets in record numbers. These alarmist pre-launch rumors typically turn out to be overblown, if not completely baseless, but this year, it could be different.

Hard to get Persistent rumors talk about the difficulties Apple is facing in manufacturing enough iPhone X units ahead of its release on November 3. Pre-orders for the highly-anticipated device open next week, but according to Ming-Chi Kuo, a trusted analyst working with KGI Securities, Apple is still struggling to iron out kinks in the iPhone X’s massive supply chain.

Supply crunch As per Kuo, citing his industry checks, Apple may only be able to manufacture 2 to 3 million iPhone X ahead of November 3. Even considering the high price of the iPhone X – and the fact that the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus are already available – global demand for the smartphone is set to outstrip this initial supply.

It’s the little things Apple is reportedly having issues with three seemingly-minor iPhone X components: the device antenna, a flexible circuit board that connects to the antenna, and the infrared projector for the TrueDepth camera. Apple has reportedly solved most of the problems with the infrared projector, but the antenna production is likely to remain a serious bottleneck. That’s because Apple can count on only one supplier, after the other one failed to meet its manufacturing requirements.

Be warned What does this mean for customers? The takeaway here is that it will be unusually hard to buy the latest iPhone this year. If you want one for yourself, or plan to put it under the Christmas tree for a loved one, you better be at your computer, locked and loaded, when pre-orders open on October 27 at midnight.

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