Apple Evaluating Thailand Flooding Impact on Mac Production

Flooding in recent months has devastated parts of Thailand, including areas where factories that produce parts for the Mac computer line. Some of those factories have been shut down, and Apple is now looking into what impact that may have on its computer production timeline.

“Our hearts go out to all of the people in Thailand who have experienced these devastating losses of life and property as a result of the monsoons and the flooding,” Apple CEO Tim Cook said during the company’s fourth fiscal quarter earnings call Tuesday afternoon. “There are several factories that are currently not operable and the recovery timeline for these factories is not known at this point.”

Thailand floods limit hard drive suppliesThailand flooding limiting hard drive supplies

Mr. Cook said that weather has hampered Apple’s ability to look into the status of the factories in flooded areas, but he expects the company — along with other PC makers — may have trouble obtaining hard drives and hard drive parts.

“From the work that we have done we would say that our primary exposure is on the Mac because… a the number of drives or drive components that are sourced in Thailand is a significant portion of the total worldwide supply of drives,” Mr. Cook said.

Apple reported record Mac sales for its fourth fiscal quarter with 4.89 million units sold. Revenue for the quarter came in at US$28.27 billion, and profit hit $6.62 billion.

With Apple approaching the holiday buying season, the company potentially faces problems getting enough hard drives for its computers thanks to the flooding.

“It is something that I’m concerned about,” Mr. Cook said. “I’m virtually certain there will be an overall industry shortage of disk drives as a result of the disaster.”