In light of Apple’s launch of two new iPhones, Bloomberg has taken an extensive look at the behind-the-scenes process of Apple’s shipments of new products from the Asia-based supply chain to sales channels such as Apple Stores.
The process starts in China, where pallets of iPhones are moved from factories in unmarked containers accompanied by a security detail. The containers are then loaded onto trucks and shipped via pre-bought airfreight space, including on old Russian military transports. The journey ends in stores where the world’s biggest technology company makes constant adjustments based on demand, said people who have worked on Apple’s logistics and asked not to be identified because the process is secret.
The process, designed by Apple CEO Tim Cook, is led by Senior VP of Operations Jeff Williams and Michael Seifert, another operations executive at Apple.
Some interesting tidbits include the process of security guards consistently following the new devices from shipment to delivery. When a product actually launches, the supply management process is said to continue as Apple studies the progress of the launch.