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Coronavirus: uncertainty about demand for the “iPhone 12” complicates production; AASPs incentives and more

Just yesterday, we commented on a series of news about what Apple is doing to combat (and work around) the Coronavirus (COVID-19). Now, we will see what else Apple has done to continue its activities – some things, however, do not depend exclusively on it.

One of the biggest uncertainties is related to the production of gadgets, especially the next generation of iPhones; in recent days, several articles have released diffuse information, and the fact is that there is still no assertive answer about the future of the iPhone, literally.

In addition, Apple Authorized Service Centers (Apple Authorized Service Providers, or AASPs) will receive Apple subsidies, as we will see later. Finally, a new measure adopted by the company and Goldman Sachs will include the owners of the Apple Card.

Production of the “iPhone 12”

As we said, since the beginning of the pandemic in China last January, much has been speculated about the production of Apple, which was hit hard by the suspension of activities at the factories. With the spread of the virus around the world, however, what would be worrying Apple now is the demand for the iPhone in the second half of this year – when most likely new devices will be introduced – according to a report by Wall Street Journal.

So even if the mass production of the future iPhone has been delayed, or the Cupertino giant is considering delaying the launch of the new devices for a few months, the fact is that the pandemic has had an effect on the market that could take a long time to be reversed, since millions of people will lose their jobs or even fail to reopen their trades after quarantine.

As initial orders for new iPhones are made, generally at this time of year, the WSJ explained that, due to the pandemic, consumer demand “has never been so uncertain”. Thus, if the Apple exceeds the number of pieces (mainly of 5G modems, which are expensive) and sales are much lower than expected, this will certainly reduce the company’s profit margins.

Nevertheless, analyst Mehdi Hosseini, from Susquehanna, said that Apple will likely stick to the production schedule with suppliers and will reassess demand in May or June. Anyway, even if the new iPhones are released within the expected timeframe, we will see how Apple will convince customers to switch devices amid the economic uncertainty that affects not only the United States, but also Brazil and many other countries.

Aid to AASPs

THE MacRumors obtained access to an Apple memo, shared with its Authorized Service Centers, in which the company determines that it will provide $ 20 for each iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch or Beats device repair, plus $ 25 for every Mac repair.

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This measure will not only contribute to maintaining the activities of AASPs, but is also necessary since, with Apple stores closed (except those in China), many users turn to these locations for assistance and support. As such, Apple’s subsidies are expected to make “customers and technicians feel more secure during these difficult times”.

Apple Card

Now, at least a refreshing piece of news for Apple Card owners: in partnership with Goldman Sachs bank, Apple will allow its customers postpone interest-free April invoice payment, extending a similar program that was launched in March, as disclosed by Bloomberg.

It is possible to request the postponement of payment by sending a message to the ‌Apple Card‌ support, through the Wallet app. Also according to Bloomberg, Apple is informing card owners about the option via email.

We understand that the situation at COVID-19 presents unique challenges for everyone and that some customers may have difficulty making their monthly payments. The pleApple Card‌ is committed to helping you lead a healthier financial life.

If you signed up for the Customer Support Program in March, you will need to sign up again.

Although it does not incur interest, this can be a double-edged sword, since Apple Card balances will eventually need to be paid – but at this point, it can help a number of people who have other, more priority expenses.

via 9to5Mac, MacRumors