In a move that some people consider a publicity stunt, Apple has put a short supply of the new iPhone 7 and 7 Plus smartphones on sale on Friday. The Los Angeles Times pointed out on Friday that people were still lining up despite an announcement there would be limited quantities of the iPhone available.
“Hopefully those fanboys and fangirls aren’t expecting to walk out with a jet black iPhone 7. Or any color of the iPhone 7 Plus. Apple says only ‘limited quantities’ of the iPhone 7 in black, silver, gold and rose gold will be available at retail stores.”
The article added that Apple said initial supplies of the iPhone 7 Plus in all colors and the iPhone 7 in jet black sold out during the online pre-order period and won’t be available for walk-in customers.”
Mac Rumors points out that the iPhone 7 Plus is especially hard to find.
“Customers relentless in their search for an iPhone 7 Plus have attempted to visit resellers like AT&T, Best Buy, and Target only to be disappointed, as supply of the 5.5-inch model is virtually nonexistent in any stores on launch day. Apple preemptively warned that demand would outstrip supply as usual, and it has not specified when iPhone 7 Plus and Jet Black availability will improve.”
However, shipping estimates for both the iPhone 7 Plus and hard-to-find iPhone 7 models have improved. Some people who were initially told they wouldn’t be able to get their new iPhone until the middle of October will now receive their phones at the end of September. Still, a lot of commenters after Mac Rumor‘s article are angry.
“What the hell is going on with in store availability? The lack of inventory might be the worst of any iPhone launch in recent memory,” says Technarchy.
“Apple needs to start manufacturing new iPhones a couple of month earlier, delay launch a couple of months, or do away with stocking iPhones in the Apple stores altogether since you have to order them online. What they think is a good marketing plan just makes customers furious!” claims Scooterman7.
A check at the T-Mobile Store on Los Feliz Blvd. in Los Angeles showed that despite a whole line of people, T-Mobile only received three 128 GB iPhone 7 units in black. They did let people know that they could order the iPhone at the T-Mobile store and the item would be shipped overnight when they are in stock. Still, there were a lot of upset customers.
Twitter has been filled with disappointment at Apple for what they consider a poor iPhone launch.
Pretty disappointed with how @Apple went about with preorders/launch of the iPhone 7. ???????????? @AppleSupport
There are several who think Apple is purposely releasing a short supply to create a lot of hype. The release of the iPhone 7 comes at a crossroads for Apple, a company who has seen sales declines for the past year or so. Both the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus have received great reviews, but many of the same reviewers believe that neither phone is a must-upgrade device.
CNET gave the iPhone 7 Plus four-and-a-half stars. They note that the dual rear cameras deliver true double optical zoom and the fact that the phone is water resistant. They like the fact that the battery lasts longer than last year’s model. They do criticize the lack of a headphone jack and that the design is behind-the-times since competing smartphones squeeze a 5.5-inch screen into smaller bodies.
Perhaps Apple’s biggest advantage in the market is that their phones are not blowing up on people. Many considered the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 to be the most advanced smartphone ever made. However, an international recall occurred after reports that Samsung’s new smartphone exploded on a number of people. You can fully expect Apple to advertise that fact in upcoming iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus commercials.