updated 01:55 pm EST, Thu March 4, 2010
No more than 250,000 at present?
Current iPad production levels are indeed low, claims Think Equity's Vijay Rakesh. The analyst cites checks with Taiwanese manufacturers, which suggest "some minor delays" in ramping up production for the tablet. A mere 200,000 to 250,000 iPads per month are said to be possible at the moment, and production may not be able to hit 800,000 to 1 million units a month until at least April. "We believe this is just a minor hiccup in a longer-term entirely new revenue stream and product roadmap for AAPL," says Rakesh.
The new allegation differs significantly from a leak out of Foxconn parts suppliers, insisting that between 600,000 and 700,000 iPads will be ready by the end of March. Those numbers in turn contrast with a claim by Canaccord Adams analyst Peter Misek, saying that just 300,000 tablets might be ready in March. Misek has quoted an "unspecified production problem" as the source of delays.
Rakesh comments that the trouble does not involve flaws in "glass or [the] manufacturing process," as has been argued in some quarters. The Foxconn sources claim that there are no problems whatsoever, though, leaving the matter in dispute. Apple is believed to have until March 26th to build up stock of Wi-Fi-only iPad models.