To minimize the impact of shortages, Cupertino has reportedly been making aggressive moves to secure components from overseas suppliers. According to analyst Brian White of Ticonderoga Securities, Apple executives contacted suppliers "immediately" after the Japanese earthquake and offered upfront cash payments to ensure adequate supply.
Meanwhile, ThinkEquity analyst Rajesh Ghai writes that Apple has secured approximately 60% of the total available touch panel capacity. This jibes with a recent DigiTimes report that claimed Apple's control of the touchscreen market will cause Research In Motion's BlackBerry PlayBook tablet to be delayed by a month, giving the iPad 2 a healthy head start.
It remains to be seen whether delays will materialize, but Ghai notes that Apple's primary manufacturing source, Hon Hai, doesn't expect any shortages. Furthermore, he mentions that bumping the iPhone 5 to a fall launch could prove beneficial as it would give Apple more time to polish the handset, which would arrive during a stronger shopping season.