CDMA iPhone Production Boosted on Expected Asia Demand
According to a new report out of the East Asian supply chain, Apple's second iPhone manufacturer just increased its production plans for CDMA iPhones by 50% on expected demand from developing markets. Digitimes reports
that Pegatron, which joined traditional iPhone manufacturer Foxconn last year, is raising its production target from 10 million to 15 million units. The expectation that customers of CDMA carriers in countries like China, Japan, South Korea and India will snap up iPhones in large numbers reportedly led to the increase.
Apple's manufacturing plan is for Foxconn to solely handle the production of CDMA iPhones destined for the US, with Pegatron taking care of shipments to the rest of the world. Pegatron had originally expected to produce around 10 million CDMA iPhones in 2011, but reportedly has increased that forecast to anywhere from 12 to 15 million. The reason: growing demand for the iPhone among users of CDMA carriers in the rapidly developing economies of South Asia. While GSM carriers represent a much larger market overall with over 1.5 billion subscribers worldwide, there are still about 600 million CDMA subscribers
, most of them in the Asia Pacific region. So while Verizon in the US was obviously the largest target for Apple, there is still significant demand in Asia, which will only grow as the iPhone 4 is replaced by the iPhone 5 (which some expect
will be a dual-mode GSM-CDMA phone) and prices drop for the older device.
Pegatron Technology was spun off from the Taiwanese computer products manufacturer Asustek last year. Though it still makes devices and components for Asus and other computer manufacturers like Acer, the new company is making less than expected and is hoping for this increase of 20% to 50% over initial estimates to boost its bottom line. Digitimes estimates the cost of the CDMA iPhone 4 at $190-200 US, as compared to $188 for the GSM iPhone 4.