Sun, Sep 16, 2012 - Page 13 News List

Swamped Apple pushes back some iPhone 5 orders

AFP, NEW YORK

People wait outside the Yerba Buena Center where Apple was holding an event to unveil the iPhone 5 in San Francisco, California, on Wednesday.

Photo: EPA

With a flood of orders coming for the new iPhone 5, Apple pushed back delivery times for the new device on its Web site on Friday.

Apple’s US Web site said that for those ordering the new smartphone, shipping would be in two weeks, a week later than promised.

The new iPhone may be available at Apple retail outlets and third party sellers starting on Sept. 21.

According to specialized Web sites, Apple exhausted its initial supply within 60 minutes of opening pre-orders on its Web site.

“One hour after pre-orders went live tonight, Apple.com shifted shipping expectations from one to two weeks due to the overwhelming demand,” the Web site TechCrunch said.

That compared with 22 hours for the iPhone 4S and 20 hours for the iPhone 4, the Web site said, adding that the deluge of orders caused technical problems for Apple’s site and those of some carriers.

“This highlights unprecedented demand for the iPhone 5 and much stronger than the iPhone 4S,” said Brian White, analyst at Topeka Capital Markets.

Apple Web sites in Britain, Canada, France and Germany also indicated shipments of the phones in two to three weeks.

The smartphone is being sold initially in nine countries, and is planned to be in 100 by the end of the year, according to Apple.

Some analysts say Apple could sell 10 million in the opening days and 50 million before the end of this year.

Apple shares rose 1.2 percent to a new all-time closing high on Friday of US$691.28, giving the tech firm a market value of US$648 billion.

Analyst Stephen Turner at Hilliard Lyons said Apple still has room to grow, with the iPhone, a likely new version of the iPad and other revenue streams.

“The company has over 435 million iTunes accounts. We believe that not only will Apple sell more ‘idevices’ to these customers and new customers in the future, it intends to continue generating significant ‘recurring revenue’ from iTunes purchases and the App Store,” he said in a note to clients.

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