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Apple is ramping up shipments of its iPhone XR handset ahead of the device’s October launch, according to a new report.
Shipments of the upcoming mid-range smartphone, which is launching later than its OLED counterparts, are expected to ramp up to 20 million units in October, Apple supply chain sources told DigiTimes.
More than that, Apple’s orders for the unreleased handset have increased 50 percent through December — in the midst of the busy holiday shopping season.
Previously, supply chain sources indicated that the colorful iPhone XR handset could make up about half of total iPhone production throughout 2018.
This revised report indicates that Apple is expecting the device to be even more popular than originally anticipated. That might be due to early reviews of the iPhone XS and XS Max, many of which suggest consumers wait for the XR to drop to buy a new iPhone.
Still, market watchers have long forecasted that the mid-range LCD iPhone would sell like hot cakes. That’s despite the fact that the device’s $749 starting price is higher than the original $699 rumored price point.
And although the iPhone XR retails for more than the average selling price of top-tier Chinese handsets, the device could remain competitive in China due to its feature set and its new dual-SIM capabilities.
As far as the currently available lineup, DigiTimes expects the iPhone XS Max to maintain shipment momentum of 4 to 5 million units a month, about 20 percent of total Apple handset shipments. (At least, until the XR launches.)
The incrementally updated iPhone XS might see slower shipment momentum, which could gradually drop off in November, industry sources added. That echoes early reviews of the new OLED handsets, which claim that the 5.8-inch XS is only nominally updated compared to its predecessor.
At launch, the iPhone XR will start at $749 for the base 64GB model. It’ll come in new color options like White, Black, Blue, Coral, Yellow and Red. Like its OLED stablemates, the XR will feature an edge-to-edge display design, Face ID, wireless charging, and other incremental improvements.
The iPhone XR will become available for preorder on Friday, Oct. 19. The device will ship to consumers and hit store shelves on Oct. 26.