iPhone 5 now available for pre-order
Here's good news for all those waiting to get their hands on the iPhone 5. Apple's latest flagship device is now available for pre-order in select countries.
The pre-order process went live on September 14 at 12:01am PT with US carriers AT&T, Verizon and Sprint offering the smartphone. We'd like to remind users that Apple will be limiting pre-orders and in-store purchases to two phones per customer.
CNET reports that early buyers were greeted with stores under maintenance, including Apple's own store. Some users managed to place orders using the iOS app. Others found it difficult to complete the order process with one such user receiving a message that read, "We have an iPhone for you. We're currently unable to reach the carrier systems to process your order, but will reserve an iPhone for you." It offered a reservation confirmation and promised to e-mail him when he could proceed with his order.
Those wanting to purchase the iPhone 5 in the traditional way, can start lining up outside Apple retail stores in the US, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and the UK on Friday September 21 at 8am local time. Adding to this, Apple has revealed that Singapore, Hong Kong, and Japan will be the first Asian countries to sell iPhone 5 when it is released worldwide on September 21.
The device will roll out worldwide to 22 more countries on September 28, including Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland. note here that no other Asian country is included this time round.
Phil Schiller, Apple's senior vice president of worldwide marketing, said at the keynote that hopefully the iPhone 5 will reach 100 countries, with 240 carriers by the end of the year. Schiller added that it will be Apple's fastest iPhone roll-out ever.
This year Apple fans can also look towards purchasing the iPhone 5 from Walmart, who for the first time ever will also be taking pre-orders for all three major carriers starting at 8:00AM on Friday in US and it'll also be offering a discount. The entry-level 16GB iPhone 5 will be available in WalMart for $189.97 with a two-year contract, which is $10 less than the phone's standard price.
The iPhone 4S will now retail for $89.97 down from $148 with a two-year contract. The older iPhone 4 will sell for 97 cents with a two- year contract, reduced from its previous $48.88 price tag.
Apple sold more than 4 million iPhone 4S during its launch weekend last year, nearly twice the 1.7 million iPhone 4 models sold in the same period in 2010. In 2009, Apple sold about 1 million iPhone 3GS'.
While the local operator price for iPhone 5 in Asia is yet to be officially disclosed, the US cost of the handset, for 16GB, 32GB, and 64GB versions, will be US$199, US$299, and US$399 respectively.
The iPhone 5 will come in white and silver, and black and slate versions. With a thickness of barely 7.6 mm and weighing 112g, the new iPhone will be approximately 18 percent thinner and 20 percent lighter than the iPhone 4S.