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AT&T pushes walk-in iPhone 4 sales to June 29

updated 03:30 pm EDT, Tue June 22, 2010

iPhone 4 demand stalls ATT retail shipments

AT&T sparked controversy this afternoon by warning that it wouldn't have any iPhone 4 units at retail for walk-in purchases until June 29. Citing the 10 times higher pre-orders, it said only those who'd already ordered on June 15 will get theirs on Thursday. All others will have to wait the extra five days, when buyers will have to come in on a first-come, first-served basis.

The delay doesn't have an impact on those who pre-ordered but chose to wait for an in-store pickup.

Apple is increasingly thought to have been genuinely caught off-guard by the level of pre-orders, which at 600,000 on the first day was significantly above any previous launch. AT&T is hurt as it will have to share launch day supplies not only with Apple but with Best Buy, Radio Shack and Walmart.

by MacNN Staff



  1. Herod

    Joined: Dec 1969


    come on

    after you canceled half the orders this shouldn't be an issue.

  1. phillymjs

    Joined: Dec 1969


    When will they learn?

    Granted it's not AT&T's fault that Apple can't meet demand right now, but maybe they should have anticipated this scenatio and tried the concept of "under-promise and over-deliver"... announce walk-in sales starting one week later than preorders from the get go, then move the date -up- if inventory later allows it.

    Does ANYONE in that company think ahead???

  1. Fast iBook

    Joined: Dec 1969


    This is incorrect.

    This is absolutely wrong. Att corporate locations will have them june 24, about 6000 per store. I called att, they confirmed this. What may be referenced is the resellers, who will wait to get their stock after pre-orders are fulfilled.

    I will call again in the morning to both the customer care call center and the several stores i know of just to double check... but um i think what may have happened is that someone speaking on behalf of att mobility misspoke or was misquoted. The allotment for pre-orders, and the allotment for retail, come from 2 separate supply chains, you cannot take retail alloted product and use it for pre-order fulfillment, the units destined for retail are not for sale till the 24th. Their serial numbers are blocked from the pre-order process, and they are being shipped to att stores for att stores to sell, not for pre-order pickup, a whole other system was put in place to ship a set amount of units for pre-order for att, once those units are spoken for the people will just have to wait for the supply chain to catch up, hence if you pre-ordered after the 15th but before they froze the pre-orders you could be looking at a july delivery for your new phone, because it hasnt even been manufactured yet. The units slated for att stores have been manufactured and will arrive late tuesday evening via UPS and FedEx.

    Seriously, where is the reference system these days, if you post information, cite a source that the reader can independently investigate.

    - A

  1. Fast iBook

    Joined: Dec 1969


    I double-checked........


    I have also confirmed that ONLINE orders will commence on the 29th, IN STORE sales are NOT CONNECTED to the pre-order system.

    - A

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Re: This is incorrect

    This is absolutely wrong. Att corporate locations will have them june 24, about 6000 per store.

    There is NO WAY that each ATT store is going to have 6000 iphones. How many corporate locations are there? 500? 1000? You're then talking that they'd have 3 to 6 million phones at ATT alone. That means Apple will have at least that many at their stores. So, somehow Apple won't be able to fill orders for days or weeks, but there's 6-12 million phones out there. I don't think they pre-ordered that many.

    Perhaps you misheard the ATT person, who said they would have iphones at all their 6000 stores.

  1. Fast iBook

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Retraction of my previous statements.

    Apparently no one at att's call centers were told about the change, and only the store managers were told last night at like 8 pm eastern time, store employees did not know till after close (typically 10 pm local).

    No, it was 6000 per store, give or take depending on the perceived demand, ie lower traffic stores would get less.

    I was misinformed about the delay by people who did not have up to date information, apparently what happened is apple unblocked the allotment meant for retail locations, and att literally has no more iphone 4's and will not have any to sell till the 29th. Pre-orders and online sales for the iPhone 4 are not just temporarily suspended, pre-ordering is done via att, online ordering will return some time later, possibly in july or august after the initial rush is over. iPhones pre-ordered via apple are now shipping in mid to late july, and now there's the delay on the white iPhone, so we may see some sparse supply till those units do finally ship.

    Every att employee i've spoken to is furious about this, people's shifts were changed to handle the 7 am open tomorrow, now they need to see if enough people are available 29th to get an early open that day instead. It will be on a store by store basis, since each store has different numbers of employees and will receive different numbers of phones. Also, the call centers have been swamped with angry calls from irate people who were planning on getting the phone thursday.

    Radio shack locations also apparently got the shaft as none may have it for weeks, though some may have it tomorrow. Same with Best Buy, those units were held by apple and will be used for apple's launch day tomorrow at its retail locations, so they may have few or none, you have to call the actual store you plan to get the iPhone at, only they will know if they will have them tomorrow. No store knows the amount either, and since the white iPhone is delayed, people who dont care and just want the phone who may have wanted a white one will likely just grab a black one.

    This is a mess right now, but by mid-july everything should be sorted out. No one at all expected this demand, even though some people thought it might happen, they didn't actually think it would. This is currently the most popular product on a supply/demand ratio on earth right now, so popular in fact that other countries may get bumped and have to wait.

    On a side note, i REALLY don't think vzw or any of th' other carriers could have handled this, i think it would have been way worse, less organized, and less information shared with confused customers.

    - A

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