The Japanese earthquake had a devastating effect on the people of Japan and temporarily shut down many manufacturing facilites. Analysts speculated this disaster might have produced a shortage of key components used in the electronics manufacturing process, but according to Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster, this shortage will have minimal effect on the future supply of the iPad 2.
Munster expects the current shortage of the iPad 2 to continue into the June 2011 quarter, but this shortage is the result of excessive demand, not component production issues. Both the iPad and the iPhone 4 could see, at most, a one to two week delay as a result of earthquake-related shutdowns. This is good news for Apple customers looking to score an iPad 2, especially those international fans who waited in long lines today, only to walk away empty-handed.
Of course, there are many problems Japan faces these days that are much more important than producing computers, but it's good to hear that this isn't another issue to deal with. A resumption of Japanese manufacturing will also help to stimulate the economy in Japan and help rebuild the devastated country.