iPhone X
Demand for iPhone X components has weakened. Reuters/Peter Nicholis

Unfortunately, the demand for Apple’s iPhone X may have started to dwindle last month in spite of the fast approaching holiday season. Sources from an upstream supplier have disclosed that the weakening demand for iPhone X components could ultimately lead to reduced shipments in the following year.

On Friday, DigiTimes reported, citing sources from an upstream component supply chain, that parts shipments for the iPhone X flagship device will likely drop this December given the lower demand for components in November. Because of this, the supply chain is worried that Apple could end up reducing its shipment target for the first quarter of 2018.

The sources revealed that for the month of November, Apple’s component orders significantly dropped. It is said that the orders were around 30 percent lower than what was predicted. This shows that demand for iPhone X key components isn’t growing as strong as what Apple expected it to be. This is despite of the improved yield rates for the production of the iOS 11-running flagship handset.

The sources divulged that the dwindling of demand for iPhone X components comes at a time when Apple is already capable of producing more units. In fact, the waiting period for pre-orders has shortened from 5-6 weeks to just 1-2 weeks.

Just how bad is the diminished demand for iPhone X components? Well, it’s notably bad that component suppler Largan Precision is expecting its December revenues to decline after seeing a mere 0.05 percent growth in the previous month. Other Apple suppliers — chassis maker Catcher Technology and touch panel supplier General Interface Solution — are suffering the same fate.

Given the current situation, the upstream supply chain sources are expecting iPhone X shipments in the first two months of 2018 to be just as low as the shipments in November. Then, they are anticipating a sharp decline in March 2018. It’s worth noting though that even with the predicted weakened demand for iPhone X early next year, 2018 first quarter shipments are still believed to be better than the shipments made in the same period of 2017.

The news comes a day after the iPhone X was hailed as the most innovative tech of 2017 by Tom’s Guide. In the online publication’s explanation why it chose the first OLED iPhone as the most innovative product of this year, it pointed out that the three main things that made iPhone X stand out from the rest are the Super Retina Display, the A11 Bionic chip and Face ID.

“The iPhone X isn’t the first phone to integrate technologies like OLED or facial recognition — it simply executes those features better than the competition. At the same time, the processor inside the iPhone X is miles ahead of anything from the Android camp,” Tom’s Guide said of the 10th anniversary iPhone.