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Thai flooding leaves Apple with 2TB drive shortage Thai flooding leaves Apple with 2TB drive shortage
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Thai flooding leaves Apple with 2TB drive shortage
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Old 5th December 2011, 06:40   #1
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Default Thai flooding leaves Apple with 2TB drive shortage

The massive flooding in Thailand, which put a worldwide squeeze on hard drive supplies, is now affecting shipment of certain build-to-order iMac models. While most Mac models are shipping without a hitch, adding a 2TB drive to your iMac can add five to seven weeks to the expected ship date.

Apple hasn't commented specifically on its vulnerability to the global hard drive shortage caused by the floods. At its most recent earnings call on October 18, just days after the flooding occurred, CEO Tim Cook told analysts that the extent of the damage was still unknown. "We source many components from Thailand," Cook said. "There are several factories that are currently not operable and the recovery timeline is not known at this point."

While Apple has begun transitioning its notebooks to use fast and compact solid state drives, it is still heavily reliant on hard drives. However, only BTO iMacs with 2TB drives are currently affected by the shortage: iMacs ordered with 1TB or smaller drives still ship within a few days, as do MacBook Pros, Mac minis, and Mac Pros.

AppleInsider noted that Mac Pros can still be outfitted with as many as four 2TB drives without adding and shipping delay, suggesting that what stock of 2TB drives Apple has on hand is being allocated to the Mac Pro for now.

The effects of October's flooding are expected to carry over until at least the end of the first quarter of 2012. Over half of the hard drives made in the world are manufactured in Thailand, and the flooding there has knocked many HDD factories offline for several weeks now. Western Digital announced on Friday that production had finally resumed at one of its factories, but warned that it own production output will be short for the next quarter or so. Analysts predict that hard drive shortages could pull PC production down as much as 10 percent through the first quarter of 2012.
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