Apple is lifting restrictions on the number of iPhone 5 handsets a single customer can buy at once. Customers were previously allowed to buy two phones per transaction, with a ten-phone lifetime limit. That now appears to have been increased to a ten-phone limit per transaction, with no lifetime limit. This could indicate that Apple’s iPhone 5 supply may be normalizing, with shipment times dropping lately. Jordan Golson of MacRumors explains:
In recent days, we've seen ship times for some countries drop as low as 2-4 business days. Additionally, an Apple Retail source tells us that the prior restrictions on retail iPhone 5 purchases -- two per transaction and a ten-phone lifetime limit -- have been changed to ten phones per transaction and no lifetime limit.
Additionally, one of the larger reasons for the limits was most likely the large market of resellers, people who buy iPhones in bulk and then sell them to people in countries where the iPhone is not yet available. Many of these devices go to China, where the iPhone 5, iPad mini, and iPad 4 are launching later this month, and the demand on resellers could dwindle after the launch. If this is true, it would give Apple the increased control over the customer experience that they desire, as well as giving customers a more direct relationship with Apple.