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iPhone shortage hits South Africa

(Image credit: iPhone)

Customers in South Africa have been placed on waiting lists for weeks due to a national shortage of iPhone 12 Pro series devices – but ordering online may get you ahead of the queue.

According to Bloomberg, Apple has been dealing with supply issues for the iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Mini, iPhone 12 Pro, and iPhone 12 Pro Max since last year, owing in part to a shortage of power chips.

The new iPhone 12 phones have 5G connectivity as well as new camera features that can consume a lot of power. The chips are a critical component in the iPhone's power management.

The main causes of the shortage are increased global demand for silicon and supply chain disruption caused by the pandemic.

The new iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max devices are currently in particularly short supply in South Africa.

Local mobile networks that get their stock directly from Apple have been impacted.

"The global increase in demand for both the iPhone 12 Pro and Pro Max has resulted in a shortage of in-country supply of these devices over the past few months", said MTN executive for corporate affairs Jacqui O’Sullivan."

MTN currently has stock of the iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Mini, and iPhone 12 Pro, but the much-desired iPhone 12 Pro Max is still unavailable. On their online channels, the iPhone 12 Pro Max sold out faster than expected.

"Global supply constraints on certain variants of the iPhone 12 Pro and Pro Max models have existed since launch," a Vodacom spokesperson told Business Insider. Vodacom has also experienced sporadic supply problems.

On Vodacom's website, waiting times for some devices range from two to three weeks.

Cell C only has the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 mini models in stock, while the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max are still unavailable.

Despite the fact that the iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max are displayed on Telkom's website, the company's online contact center stated that the devices have not been available "for a long time."