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Apple, AT&T struggle to cope with pre-order demand

updated 01:15 pm EDT, Tue June 15, 2010

Apple kicks callers from phone line

Early problems with US iPhone 4 pre-orders are persisting well into Tuesday, anecdotes suggest. Many people are unable to complete pre-orders through either the Apple or AT&T websites, as these are timing out due to server load. The troubles are also resulting in crashes with the new Apple Store app, which can likewise be used to pre-order.

The situation is dire enough that Apple is even said to be turning away callers to its 1-800-MY-APPLE phone line. "Thank you for calling Apple," an automated message begins. "Due to extremely high call volumes, we are unable to answer your call at this time. We apologize for the inconvenience. Please try your call again later. We appreciate your business and look forward to serving you in the future."

While potentially a good sign for sales, frustration is reported to be widespread. It may be simpler in some cases to pre-order in person at a retail store, despite the existence of long lineups in some regions. Even longer lineups are anticipated on June 24th, the day of the iPhone 4 launch.

by MacNN Staff



  1. Ned Soltz

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Ordering iPhone4

    Began trying at 6:30 am (Eastern). Apple Store down. Finally store came back up, but servers overloaded. Downloaded Apple Store App which crashed repeatedly until 1:46 pm (ET) when I was able to create a successful reservation to pick up phone on 6/24.

  1. inceptdate

    Joined: Dec 1969


    ATT Scews up again

    Apple's servers are pretty snappy... it's when they try to communicate with the ATT servers for your account when everything falls apart. This is typical of ATT. After 4 years, their network still can't handle calls without dropping them and ATT Customer Service won't admit it.

    I guess we can look forward to another 'wonderful' experience with ATT and iPhone 4.

    Thanks ATT. Love paying you for a complete lack of service.

  1. bonk316

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Ordering in store

    I would not go to an apple or AT&T store to pre-order since they have to ping AT&T server for customer upgrade elgibility. You are looking to run into problems at any AT&T and apple store until issue with server is resolved.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Seriously, people

    It is a freakin' cell phone. If you can't wait until day 5 to get your hands on one, you really need some help.

    And standing in line to 'pre-order'? Seriously?

    Comment buried. Show
  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969



    And I think we know why Apple hasn't made any announcements about their fancy server farm and such. They can't even make their web site work when dealing with a new phone going on sale.

    Of course, it could be that Apple did all this on purpose to drive stories about how amazingly popular the new iPhone is, that the phone systems were swamped. Must be millions of people wanting to buy one day one!

    Or what I read on Macintouch was true. Apple's deal with ATT on their mobile plans included a lot more, including moving their infrastructure to ATT for internet and phones. For it would be easy to believe ATT's landline and internet service is as bad as their cell service.

  1. moofpup

    Joined: Dec 1969




  1. facebook_Matt

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Jun 2010


    comment title

    I tried off and on to pre-order via for 7 hours. Apple's site would fail sometimes, then AT&T site wouldn't verify my information. I got to the add to cart screen once and it crashed. Finally after 7 hours, it just worked. 2:30 p.m. central time, I got my pre-order in. Whenever it worked, it worked flawlessly all the way through the process. Waiting on confirmation email now. Maybe everyone else will start getting their orders in too.

    Good Luck!

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