The early bird catches the iPhone…everyone else has to wait.

It’s that time of year again — iPhone pre-order day! Unfortunately, if you didn’t time it just right, you won’t be seeing your new phone for several weeks. Preorders for the iPhone X began at 12:01 a.m. PDT on Friday. It was predicted that Apple would have limited amounts of the phone, to begin with, but I don’t think anyone could foresee how quickly the phones would be on backorder. I am in the Central time zone, which means that I had to wait until 2:01 a.m. to place my order. I am not new to this process but found that even the most experienced preorder veteran can find kinks in the system.

I had decided to place my preorder this time as an upgrade with the monthly amount for the phone added to my monthly bill. In order for this to be a possibility, my phone bill had to be paid in full prior to the preorder process. That step was completed several days ago. Next, I had to be ready with two options for ordering. In my case, this meant that I had Verizon’s (my cellular carrier) and Apple’s websites open. My credit card was standing by as I anticipated having a small charge (around $30) for the activation/add-a-line fee. Then, came the waiting game. I started the refresh page dance around 1:55 a.m. and was surprised to find that Verizon had updated their website ahead of the 2:01 a.m. preorder kickoff time. I carefully place my order (64GB iPhone X in Space Gray) and after receiving my order confirmation screen, I had successfully made it through yet another Apple iPhone preorder event AND my phone is scheduled to be delivered on November 3.

Even though my process went fairly smoothly, I did have a couple of issues.

  • Total amount due at order: Even though I thought I had my bases covered as far as the upgrade fees go, I didn’t take into account that taxes and fees would be added to the order, too. So, my total at time of order was a little over $100. This was a surprise and it slowed my ordering process down a bit while I tried to figure out where the extra charges were coming from.
  • Selecting the right model/color: As luck would have it, I came down with a sinus infection the day before the iPhone preorder. So, at 2:00 a.m., I wasn’t thinking quite clearly. I was flustered trying to get through the process since I wasn’t feeling well and as a result, I actually ordered the 64GB model rather than the 256GB model that I originally planned on. By the time, my order was complete, phones were on backorder for 4 weeks so I couldn’t simply order a second phone and cancel the first order.

As it stands right now, the iPhone X is on backorder for 5-6 weeks for both models through Apple. If you don’t want to wait that long, you can try your luck on launch day (Nov. 3) at Apple Stores or wireless provider retail stores, but it’s expected that the iPhone X will have a limited supply in retail settings. As of Friday morning at 9:00 a.m., Sprint is still showing a ship date of 11/3 for both models, Verizon has a delivery date of 12/1 for the 64GB model and 12/6 for the 256GB model, and AT&T has a ship date of 12/4-12/18 for both models.

For more information on the iPhone X preorder, visit apple.com/iphonex.