Apple is known for handling supply chain and other critical parts of the business innovatively. A new report from TheInformation highlights how Apple is spending more money to overcome shipping delays caused due to pandemic. The company reportedly used more shipping containers, private jet charters, and shipping via specially designed iPad mailing boxes.
It is a well-known secret that pandemic has caused havoc when it comes to logistics. Apple has taken specific measures like shipping AirPods via sea for the first time. Furthermore, the company has increased ocean freight for older iPhone models since the delivery timing is not as important as newer models. This also helped them grow air cargo space for the more recent iPhone 12.
The report also mentions how Apple faced issues while shipping products by the sea in November last year. A large vessel heading from China to California tipped, and thus 1,800 containers sunk to the bottom of the ocean. In all likelihood, it contained Beats headphones and other items.
Last February, Apple’s Singapore distribution center ran out of the brown mailing boxes needed to fulfill a spike in iPad orders from China, stemming from increased demand for remote-learning devices, said a person with direct knowledge of Apple’s logistics operations. While the specially designed iPad mailing boxes were originally made in China, the only solution that avoided delays for customers was to fly in a shipment of the boxes that was sitting unused at a warehouse in the U.S.
Charter planes are typically a more expensive way of travel. However, Apple reportedly hired 200 private jets to ship devices in 2020. The company was forced to do so after delivery partners had run out of capacity. Apple is said to have chartered 200 planes for the shipments. The company usually hires charter planes in single digits. However, last year was very different for the Cupertino company.
As per the report, Apple also resorted to using retail stores in the United States and Canada as distribution centers. The arrangement allowed courier partners like FedEx and UPS to collect shipments directly from Apple retail stores and deliver them to nearby customers. This helped them cut down on shipping time and reduce the burden on delivery partners.