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U.S. carrier supplies of iPhone 5s reportedly low for launch day

Along with the excitement the impending iPhone 5s launch is bringing to the world, there continues to be the lingering thoughts of how many there will be out there to buy. Apple doesn't talk publicly about such numbers, but whispers still find their way out into the open. The latest to chime in are carrier sources of AllThingsD, that suggest their inventory for launch isn't that hot.

Sources at multiple U.S. carriers said that the inventory of the new phone is significantly less than expected.“We will have grotesquely unavailable inventory,” was how one carrier source put it. A source at a second carrier also complained of extremely disappointing shipments from Apple, but said that demand for the high-end iPhone may also be slightly less than initially thought, too. Apparently it is the colors of the iPhone 5c that seem to have captured more customer’s eye.

No doubt Apple will also be banking on the new iPhone 5c taking its fair share of the purchases come Friday, with the carrier sources claiming supply of the lower-cost option are better than that of the flagship iPhone 5s.

Every year a new iPhone comes out, every year it's an extremely popular product and every year there's talk of if or how quickly the various options will sell out. This year is absolutely no different; the iPhone 5s is going to sell like hotcakes. For now, our advice remains the same. If you want one – really, really want one – on September 20, head out early to your local Apple or carrier store and get in line.

Do you want an iPhone 5s enough to wait out in line for it? Or will you be taking your chances with an online order this Friday?

Source: AllThingsD

Richard Devine

Senior Editor at iMore, part time racing driver, full time British guy

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There are 25 comments. Add yours.

kch50428 says:

Same story, different device launch... Apple is doomed!

Richard Devine says:

Yup. Doomed all the way to the bank ;-)

ZkiZZoiD says:

Nice point there Richard, Apple will never ever be doomed. The envy of other companies would only make Apple stay on top for a long , long time.

IIJBII says:

Exactly! Every launch they say the same thing. It's more attractive then "iPhone inventory to exceed demand on launch".

Derrick4Real says:

I think the real issue is not about Apple. These are carriers complaining. It's not an Apple problem. It's not "more attractive" for a carrier because a carrier is looking for this time to snatch up a ton of new subscribers and extend others for another two years.

The carrier would much rather have as many phones as they can possibly sell immediately. They want enough to catch the impulse buyers too that just come in to check out the hype and lock them up. It's not about Apple being "doomed" the real underlying issues is the carriers want to strike while the iron is hot. They want to grab people while their guard is down. That's why they are pissy.

Now in the alternative if they actually can't meet demand it's a management issue and investors will adjust accordingly but either way Apple will turn profits for off of this launch, they'll likely have another ipad launch soon and then xmas and good quarters will continue. But big pictures anyone claiming apple is doomed in the near term is foolish and honestly, the only place i really hear that claim in iMore mocking the claim that apple is doomed.

Mariam936 says:

Will it be more of a struggle to order iphone 5s than the 5c?

rbreban says:


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rbreban says:

I'm getting one at Claro PR around the 26 when it comes out and since I work there I'll have one waiting for me :D

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Dark_Blu says:

I'm not getting in any lines to buy an iPhone. I will show up around 11am (like I did in 2011 for the 4S) and I doubt there will still be a line. Store will be busy, no doubt, but I won't have any problem at least getting a 5C.

Harry Wild says:

If articles like this does not draw people to wait in line for 2 days or more; nothing will! I will wait for the iPhone 6 to come around before I upgrade! Nice marketing Apple!

Nathan Bael says:

This would explain the lack of preorders for the 5s. Though they let China do preorders, which is annoying. Luckily I buy the least desireable size (64g) and am willing to accept any color, even gold :(

Redshirt says:

Probably a lot bigger lines there. I wonder if they'll be preventing people from buying multiples and buying up the lot

Derrick4Real says:

yeah didn't they do preorders in China specifically to prevent what happened at prior launches, which was a big ass fight in lines.

karmski says:

I think that in Western Australia the online ordering starts at midnight. Will try ordering online and if no luck, or if the delivery time is too long, thenI will head into Apple for an early morning line up.

I'm buying outright- do Apple stores generally receive more stock than carriers?

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Timelessblur says:

Standard apple. At this point they are doing it for nothing more than the hype. Free marketing. This is crap and they know it. They like the lines and using the mindlessly iSheep to fight and struggle to get one.

GlennRuss says:

There is a new iPhone? When did this happen?
Sorry could not help. I have never stood in line for one. Just wait, and they will have plenty. It is always like this. Headlines like "iPhone 5S sells out in first twenty minuets." It sounds like wow I got to get this phone. It really must be fantastic. Then you find out they only had about 100 in stock. It happens every time. I find the easy way is use the Apple store app, it hooks up with your carrier, and you get the phone pretty quick.

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quaan99 says:

Suckers are born every second.
Lol have fun with your iphone!

evorc says:

This is the dumbest thing ever. Same BS every year. As if the early adopters need any more reason to line up and look like fools. Man I have never lined up for an iPhone since I've gotten my first and will never will! What difference does it make if you have to wait two to three weeks after launch?

gammills08 says:

Me and my wife will be in line at the apple store in Tulsa OK 8pm the night before

Brm5688 says:

I will order at midnight on that's more risky than waiting in line?

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Dionte says:

I would have taken Friday off but Tuesday was more important, I have a test.