Chip orders from Apple for the second quarter of 2016 have been notably slow, according to unnamed sources in the integrated circuit supply chain (via DigiTimes).
Overall, chip orders placed by Apple for Q2 are expected to be only slightly higher than those for Q1, despite the launch of the company's 4-inch iPhone SE and 9.7-inch iPad Pro earlier this month.
First-week sales of Apple's new devices have been disappointing, according to the sources, while chip shipments for the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus for the second quarter of 2016 are likely to be halved from those shipped in the first quarter. According to DigiTimes:
Shipments for the new iPhone SE will be unable to offset the fall in shipments for the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus devices in the second quarter, the sources continued. The shipment target for the SE in the second quarter is four to five million units.
The same sources claim chip orders from Apple are unlikely to return to the previous high levels until after the third quarter of 2016, when its next-generation iPhone, iPad, MacBook and iMac products become available.
Taiwan-based website DigiTimes has a mixed track record at reporting on Apple's upcoming product plans, but its sources within the upstream supply chain have proven reliable in the past.
Back in February, the site claimed Apple would ship 9.8 million iPads in the first quarter of 2016, potentially its lowest quarterly tablet sales since the iPad 2 in mid 2011.
In January, Apple CEO Tim Cook confirmed during the company's financial earnings conference call that iPhone sales would likely decline in the March quarter, marking the first year-over-year decline since the smartphone was released in June 2007.
Apple forecast that its total revenue in Q2 2016 would be between $50 and $53 billion, compared to $58 billion in the year-ago quarter, signaling the company's first year-over-year drop in revenue in thirteen years.