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Supply constraints hit MacBook and iPad sales — how long is the wait?

MacBook Air 2022 unveiled at Apple Worldwide Developers Conference 2022
(Image credit: David Paul Morris/Getty)

Apple announced its quarterly earnings report (opens in new tab) last week where the company narrowly surpassed Wall Street expectations. iPhone revenue grew despite the iPhone 14 series launch being soon, while Mac, iPad and wearables were hit by supply chain disruptions and suffered sales declines. 

Apple reported that out of the $83 billion total revenue that the company posted for Q3, iPhone revenue accounted for almost 50% of that. Apple CEO Tim Cook cited supply chain constraints and unfavorable foreign exchange for the poor performance of Mac, iPad and wearables. Mac revenues were down 10% and although iPad managed to exceed analysts expectations, the category was also hit by supply shortages.

The ‘blip’ in Mac, iPad and wearables sales 

Apple recently launched a redesigned MacBook Air M2 in June, but that didn’t get factored into this quarter since the MacBook Air only went on sale in July. Similarly, the 13-inch MacBook Pro M2 didn’t go on sale until a few weeks after it was announced. This impacted a few weeks in June-July sales and could account for Mac revenue coming in $1 billion lower than the same quarter the year before. 

Mark Gurman of Bloomberg notes in his latest “Power On (opens in new tab)” newsletter that this is “probably more of a blip than the start of a downward trend” and that the Mac sales could rebound next quarter. Apple also remains optimistic about getting a good momentum from the new MacBook Pro 13-inch and the MacBook Air M2.

Apple blamed the decline in its sales of the tablets category specifically on the iPad Pro not selling as anticipated. But Gurman notes that “Apple doesn’t seem to have a problem with demand. Supply shortages were the main culprit”.

Apple’s wearables category, which includes Apple Watch, AirPods, HomePod, and Apple TV also reported lower sales. Tim Cook said this was because of a “cocktail of headwinds,” including macro-economic factors. Users seemed to be spending more on essentials like phones rather than this category. 

Current shipping delays for Mac, iPad and Apple Watch

Device Shipping dates
MacBook Air M2Aug 23-Aug 30
MacBook Pro 13-inch M2Aug 3
MacBook Pro 14-inch and 16-inchNo delays
iPad Pro 12.9 inchAugust 5-9
iPad AirAugust 5-9

Ultimately, Apple’s supply strain is showing on the shipping timeline of its products. The window between placing an order and actually receiving it is widening. Since the new MacBook Air M2 and 13-inch MacBook Pro launched, Apple has been struggling to stick to its shipping time.

Certain configurations of MacBook Air M2 that show an estimate of 3 weeks. However, the iPad Air 2022 and 13-inch MacBook Pro show an estimate of 4 days. In the U.S., if you order an Apple Watch 7 with a sports loop today, the shipping estimate shows it will arrive around September 7 to September 14. 

iPhone 14, Apple Watch 8 and more on the way

Apple’s launch of the iPhone 14 seems to be on track even though the company navigates some of these supply shortages. We will have to see if the shipping of the products after launch also stays on track.

Apple is set to launch the iPhone 14 along with the iPhone 14 Pro. There could also be an  iPhone 14 Max which is a 6.7-inch phone that is likely to replace the mini model in Apple's line-up this fall. There should also be an iPhone 14 Pro Max model in the works.

Along with the iPhone 14 series, Apple is expected to launch the Apple Watch 8 and AirPods Pro 2. The rumored launch date of these products is September 13. Until then, stay tuned to our hubs to find out more on the upcoming Apple devices and check out our Apple September event preview.

Sanjana loves all things tech. From the latest phones, to quirky gadgets and the best deals, she's in sync with it all. Based in Atlanta, she is the news editor at Tom's Guide. Previously, she produced India's top technology show for NDTV and has been a tech news reporter on TV. Outside work, you can find her on a tennis court or sipping her favorite latte in instagrammable coffee shops in the city. Her work has appeared on NDTV Gadgets 360 and CNBC.