Foxconn chief: We can't keep up with iPhone demand

Terry Gou tells reporters that iPhones are "not easy to make," causing the manufacturing company to miss Apple's high expectations.

Don Reisinger
CNET contributor Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.
Don Reisinger

Foxconn isn't churning out iPhones as fast as Apple would like, the Chinese company's chairman told reporters today.

"It's not easy to make the iPhones," Foxconn chief Terry Gou said, according to Reuters. "We are falling short of meeting the huge demand."

Gou didn't say which iPhones are actually difficult to produce -- Apple is still selling three models, the iPhone 5, the iPhone 4S, and the iPhone 4 -- but it's likely that he was talking about the company's latest smartphone.

Last month, an unidentified Foxconn official told the Wall Street Journal in an interview that producing the iPhone 5 is "very complicated," causing supply issues. The official went on to say that the handset is "the most difficult device that Foxconn has ever assembled."

The iPhone 5 is both thinner and taller than its immediate predecessor, the iPhone 4S. It also comes with a host of improvements, including 4G LTE support and a new, smaller Lightning port. That means Foxconn's workers are bundling lots of components into an increasingly tight box.

Apple certainly can't be happy. The company's flagship handset is currently slated to ship in three to four weeks for folks who order it now. Customers who head to carrier stores are receiving similar lead times.

The making of an iPhone (pictures)

See all photos