As China and the world continue to battle the scourge of the ongoing Covid-19 (coronavirus) outbreak, iPhone producers have said the production and sales of the product will be “temporarily constrained”.
The technology giant, Apple, said in a press statement via its website on Monday that the disruption in China from the coronavirus will mean revenues falling short of forecasts.
It also added that the production and sales of the products were affected, and that “worldwide iPhone supply will be temporarily constrained”.
Apple is the maker of iPhone and will be the first U.S. company to admit that the epidemic will affect its finances.
Apple had forecast revenues of up to $67 billion in the first quarter of this year, but might fall short due to the outbreak.
Work is starting around China after a lockdown by the authorities as a measure to control the spread of the new coronavirus outbreak.
The disease was first detected in Wuhan, Hubei Province in China in December and as so far spread all over China. The disease has also been imported to about 25 countries.
Due to the high transmission rate of the disease, many Chinese have remained indoors, and lots of businesses are yet to resume operations. This has been hurting the economy of China as inflation rate has become high.
Apple said though work is starting to resume around the country, they are experiencing a slower return to normal conditions than was anticipated.
Apple said that while the iPhone manufacturing partner sites are located outside the Hubei province – and while all of these facilities have reopened – “they are ramping up more slowly than they had anticipated.”
“All of our stores in China and many of our partner stores have been closed. – As a result, we do not expect to meet the revenue guidance we provided for the March quarter due to two main factors.
“The first is that worldwide iPhone supply will be temporarily constrained. These iPhone supply shortages will temporarily affect revenues worldwide.
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“The second is that demand for our products within China has been affected. All of our stores in China and many of our partner stores have been closed,” it stated.
To help find a solution to the outbreak, Apple said it is also “doubling its previously announced donation to support the historic public health effort”.
“The situation is evolving, and we will provide more information during our next earnings call in April,” it said.
Meanwhile, the number of confirmed cases and death toll from the outbreak in China has continued to rise.
As of Monday, a total of 1772 deaths have reported from China.
The World Health Organisation Director-General, Tedros Ghebreyesus, in the agency’s daily briefing on the status of the disease said as of 6 a.m. Geneva time on Monday, China reported 70,635 cases including 1772 deaths to the UN health agency.
In the previous 24 hours, he said, China had reported 2051 new cases, which include both clinically- and lab-confirmed cases.
He said 94 per cent of the new cases continue to come from Hubei province.
Meanwhile, outside China cases have also been on a gradual increase as the international health agency said it has received reports of 694 COVID19 cases from 25 countries and three deaths.