Manufacturers of the Apple Watch 7 [sic], as the device is expected to be called, began small-scale production last week but encountered critical challenges in reaching satisfactory production performance,” wrote Nikkei Asia; and Bloomberg itself backed up the claim with its own report.

Gurman now thinks the Series 7 will be announced on the original schedule, but the pundit warns that availability of the new Apple Watch will be severely limited at launch. Indeed, stock of the smartwatch may be so constrained, he says, that it will go on sale at a later date than the iPhone 13, despite being announced at the same time.

Reporters being naturally cautious creatures, Gurman also adds that there is still a chance that Apple will choose to delay the launch of the Apple Watch Series 7 after all.

You can catch up with the latest leaks and rumours with our regularly updated Apple Watch Series 7 news hub. We would not recommend buying an Apple Watch this close to the launch, but if you’re desperate, at least make sure you get the lowest possible price with our guide to the best Apple Watch deals.