Apple’s Chinese supply partners saw off competition from Taiwanese rivals to bag the majority of orders for Apple’s newly unveiled AirPods Max over-ear headphones, a new report today claims.
According to DigiTimes, Chinese manufacturers Luxshare Precision Industry and Goertek won the majority of AirPods Max orders, despite Taiwan-based Iventec’s involvement in the early development of the headphones.
The Chinese makers beat Taiwanese rivals to the AirPods Max orders, even though Inventec Appliances had reportedly participated in the early development of the device, said the sources.
Inventec is already a major Apple supplier of AirPods Pro and it’s not clear exactly why it lost out on orders of AirPods Max, but it’s possible the Taiwan-based manufacturer’s production lines lacked the diversification needed to assemble the new devices, which were reportedly delayed multiple times because of production issues.
DigiTimes‘ sources suggest that both Luxshare and Goertek are actually producing AirPods Max at their plants in Vietnam, underscoring Apple’s plan to accelerate the relocation of its related supply chains out of China, without necessarily moving on from its Chinese partners.
AirPods Max are now backordered until March on Apple’s online store, although Apple and third-party retailers like Best Buy and Amazon could theoretically have stocks replenished sooner.