According to a report by DigiTimes, Apple’s internal target to ship 40 million iPad tablets in 2011 has required the company to occupy as much as 60% of global touch panel capacity, placing considerable pressure on its rivals to fulfil orders from the resulting supply.
The chinese-language publications cites sources from other tablet manufacturers, highlighting that they are unable to fulfil the shipment quantities that their orders specify. Apple has used its considerable buying power to control the manufacturing capacity of suppliers including Wintek and TPK, affecting not only second-tier electronics manufacturers but also companies including RIM, Motorola and HP.
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In 2010, iPad distributors noted that touch screen supply was not impacted by capacity, instead it was the “low yields” of touch panels. As materials and manufacturing processes improved, Apple moved quickly to secure a large percentage of total manufacturing capacity, reducing its competitors ability to fulfil shipments.