Apple has reportedly returned up to eight million iPhones to manufacturing partner Foxconn because they were not up to the company's high standards.

That's according to China Business, which claims that an anonymous Foxconn employee has said that Apple sent back between five to eight million iPhones to factories "due to appearance of substandard or dysfunctional problems."

The returned products could cost Foxconn up to $1.6bn, with the price of manufacturing an iPhone unit at around $200 each.

China Business doesn't specify which iPhone model was affected or what exactly went wrong with the manufacturing process, but, following the launch of the iPhone 5 last year, a Foxconn official said that the newest model is "the most difficult device that Foxconn has ever assembled."

 

As a result, the iPhone 5 suffered from supply shortages when it launched, but those shortages seem to have been resolved since the start of 2013.

It has been speculated that the allegedly returned iPhones could even be Apple's next iPhone, dubbed iPhone 6 or iPhone 5S. If this is the case, we could see some delays for the launch of the new device.

Earlier this month, KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo also said that the next-generation iPhone could arrive later than expected due to development issues surrounding the expected built-in fingerprint sensor. The iPad mini 2 and Apple's rumoured low-cost iPhone could also be suffering from delays.

iOS 7 is also reportedly behind schedule due to a significant user interface overhaul, according to reports from Daring Fireball's John Gruber, who says that Apple has pulled engineers away from OS X 10.9 to work on the redesign of the company's next mobile operating system.

[Via The Register]

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