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AT&T Pushing Some iPhone 5 Release Day Pre-Orders Back



Last Friday, Apple, AT&T, Sprint and Verizon all put the iPhone 5 up for pre-order. The device quickly sold out at all four places with shipping times pushed back far beyond the device’s September 21st release date. Well, now we’re hearing that AT&T, at the very least, is pushing back pre-orders that were originally said to be arriving on iPhone 5 release day.

Update: AT&T Fixes iPhone 5 Pre-Order Bungle.

On Friday, a reader who was experiencing problems with AT&T’s website, decided to place a pre-order with AT&T over the phone. He called AT&T’s sales department at 7am CST when the phone lines opened and placed a pre-order for the iPhone 5 that he was told would arrive on September 21st.

Here is his initial confirmation.


Here is what AT&T originally said.

Keep in mind, that was at a time long before I placed my own iPhone 5 pre-order through AT&T’s website, a pre-order that is still slated to arrive on September 21st.

Over the weekend though, he received an email message from AT&T that stated that the iPhone 5 he pre-ordered would not be arriving on September 21st as he was originally told, but instead, it would be arriving “in approximately 14-21 business days*.”

Here is his second email which he received over the weekend.


And here is the second email.

Notice the Astrix. Here is the fine print associated with that Astrix.

*The actual shipment date and receipt of your order is not guaranteed and may be subject to delays for reasons that include, but are not limited to, product availability, inventory, credit issues and completion of other required AT&T business processes.

So not only will he likely not see the iPhone 5 that he was told he would see on release day, it’s entirely possible that he may not even see his iPhone 5 within that two to three week window.

It’s also possible that AT&T did this just to make sure that it’s covered in the event that it does miss his release day delivery. AT&T’s website states that pre-orders purchased now will arrive in 14-21 business days.

Read: iPhone 5 Pre-Orders Blow past 2 Million as Ship Dates Slip to October.

As of right now, this is the only case that we’ve seen where AT&T pushed a pre-order originally scheduled for September 21st back, but we have to assume that he is not the only one that received this email over the weekend as both Apple and the iPhone 5’s carriers clearly are under duress in terms of supply.

Did anyone else receive this message from AT&T or another carrier? Or is your September 21st pre-order safe and sound?

Thanks, Brent!



  1. Steven Cyrway

    09/17/2012 at 10:41 am

    When I ordered over the phone I was not given a set delivery date. :( and I did it the same time as him, my confirmation email also did not provide a date. All I know is at some point in the future a phone may appear.

    • tiredofwaiting

      09/20/2012 at 2:51 pm

      I ordered my phone on tuesday, so I was pretty late. They told me that my iPhone would be shipped out ON the 21st. At&t also told me that I would probably receive it on tuesday or wednesday. Who knows how they’re doin’ things.

  2. Michele K

    09/17/2012 at 11:53 am

    we pre ordered through ATT online and didnt get a delivery date either.

  3. jason

    09/17/2012 at 11:56 am

    I ordered with At&T at 12:08am PST and then called in the morning. They said order went through. Now looks like order did not go through. I am canceling my AT&T accounts including my company lines, mobile, data cards and home.

    Moving to Verizon, tired of AT&T and the poor service.

    • Wesley

      09/18/2012 at 10:43 am

      LOL, do you really think Verizon doesn’t do the same? There is someone on the other side saying the same thing about Verizon. I doubt you canceling your company lines lol

    • kevin

      09/21/2012 at 5:51 pm

      same thing, I started the order at 12 and went through at 7 on Friday. Called to verify on tuesday and said did not go through as email said and now the order was placed on tuesday so not have to wait longer. Time for some Verizon

  4. Brian

    09/17/2012 at 12:31 pm

    Ordered Friday morning @ 8:15 am CST. I received an email saying it would be delivered on 9/21/12. That’s all I have received.

  5. Raj

    09/17/2012 at 1:40 pm

    Raj: I’ve placed an order over the phone with Att on friday 11 PST…They say confirmation email takes 3-5 business days to process…Who knows when it’ll be delivered.

  6. John

    09/17/2012 at 2:42 pm

    yes they did the same thing to me….. :/

  7. Scott

    09/17/2012 at 4:17 pm

    I got the confirmation email saying I should receive it by the 21st. At the bottom of the email it said my credit card would not be charged until it shipped. I checked and my card has been charged. I ordered it at 9:30 et. Hopefully it has shipped. AT&T website says it is processing.

    • ed g.

      11/02/2012 at 7:16 am

      oct 27th -ordered 16 gig along with contract renewal- getting same message & yes ALSO got charged out of my account even though not supposed to happen until shipped !!!

  8. Mclaw

    09/17/2012 at 8:09 pm

    I ordered on Friday at around 9:30 a.m. also. I received a confirmation email that says it will be delivered 9/21…… Web site says processing. I haven’t seen anything else come through….. We will see.

  9. Kw

    09/17/2012 at 8:11 pm

    I ordered at noon eastern. Mine says it will be delivered on 9/21. Guess I have all the luck.

  10. Macaulay

    09/18/2012 at 1:36 am

    I also ordered my new phone with AT&T on Friday am at 7 am PST but I have yet to even receive a confirmation email…hmm, worried now!

  11. Joe

    09/18/2012 at 5:02 am

    I ordered it at 8am EST but our confirmation said it would arrive as early as the 21st… good luck on that one.

  12. Lity

    09/18/2012 at 8:35 am

    I ordered mine at 6:35am friday morning after being up ALL night trying to get ahold of them by phone and trying to get itno the website. I recieved a confirmation email two days later saying I should recieve it by the 21st but that it depends on credit card, availability etc I really hope it comes on friday :/

  13. GaBe

    09/18/2012 at 9:49 am

    I ordered mine that friday as well, but it seems to be pontless since it might be 3 weeks till i get it anyway. I say we should be able to go to ATT store on 9/21 and hand in our pre-order for an actual phone, instead of them selling to the public.

  14. Becky

    09/18/2012 at 11:48 am

    I ordered mine from the Apple Store online at midnight PST when they went on sale and mine is coming on the 21st for sure. I used the information you provided in your other article ( to track mine and it will be here on Friday.

  15. Dan

    09/18/2012 at 2:00 pm

    I have talked to two different people at AT&T on this. One said that all orders will arrive in the 14-21 day time frame, the second said all orders will ship overnight on the 20th. I have dealt with AT&T before and I know they tend to rush ship orders, so I can believe that they will be overnighted.

    I ordered at 3am PDT on the morning of release, I got a confirmation email stating my phone was reserved and I “should receive it as soon as 21 September 2012.” We’ll see, I haven’t received anything else stating that it will be any later.

    • Dan

      09/18/2012 at 2:02 pm

      Sorry, let me rephrase, not all will ship the 20th, only orders received the morning preorders started. Not sure what time they sold out. Depends on color and storage I suppose.

  16. Gui

    09/18/2012 at 2:52 pm

    I ordered at 730am eastern time on Friday and was told I would get the phones sept 21. I received an email today saying it would ship in 14 to 21 days!! If I would’ve known this I would’ve just purchased it on Friday!

  17. Michael

    09/18/2012 at 5:48 pm

    The second email that he received is the first initial email that I received. I gave my order to a business rep with AT&T, she completed my order at 6:03 in Florida. I got the 14-21 email. Spoke with AT&T today and they told me that if you preordered your iphone before 6am on the east coast you would get it and if it was after 6 am you would be waiting a few weeks. How can that many people possibly on the east coast order the entire available pre order supply in less than a half hour. And for all of us east coasters how do you even order a phone through AT&T before 6 am if its not even avaialable yet.I tried to cx my order so I could go an brave the line but they told me that once it is processing that there is nothing you can do.

    • Aristotle

      09/19/2012 at 2:02 am

      Placed my order at 3:06 AM Eastern Time, Received Confirmation minutes later saying I will receive it on the 21st, billed later that afternoon. Currently my status still says Pending, but my Shipping Date says it left the Fulfillment Center on 9/17/2012. And there isn’t a tracking number available yet. Not to sure what to think of this, I’m keeping my fingers crossed.

  18. Anger Gonzalez

    09/19/2012 at 1:56 am


    Sorry to hear your experiencing what I encountered in 2011 with buying my iPhone 4s. I didn’t get my device until November of 2011. Since then I got schooled on how to ensure that you can get your device at launch day.

    1. NEVER pre-order an iPhone with a Big-Box Store, or small Wireless store. Regardless what they tell you, they’ll either “Mispeak” or “Talk off the cuff”. They’ll accept your pre-order but won’t they really can’t tell you if you’ll get one because most times they’ll receive like 10 iPhones and then you if you were 11th in line on the Pre-Order list, you’ll be waiting a while.

    2. If you want to buy the phone from your wireless carrier’s website, you’ll have to be either a night owl or early riser. Sales for the iPhone launched at 12:01am PDT (means 1:01am MDT / 2:01 CDT / 3:01 EDT). When ordering from a Carrier’s site, you are going to need a highspeed connection and more than one Web Browser. These carrier sites normally crash due to high load so having more than one browser open will help. If you get hung, close the browser and try again, and again, until you get through.

    3. Order from Same deal with the times, but their servers can handle the load.

    4. If you already have an iPhone, the best bet would be to go to the app store and download Apple Store. From what I’ve heard its quick and works fast.

    Again I can’t stress the point of being ONLINE at the time they start to sell these. Most stock was gone before the 1st hour which meant that anyone calling into the Carrier’s Customer Support line to order will be basically ordering a phone that is sold out. Of course they won’t tell you this because they want your business and your money.

    I know this is won’t due anything good for those that are not getting one, but I hope the information serves useful on your future iPhone purchases.

  19. Denise

    09/20/2012 at 1:12 am

    I ordered mine on the 14th, it took forever then finally had to call, I was assured that I would get my phone on the 21st. I got my confirmation email on the 16th with my order date as the 16th. Now I am on the back order list when I should have been getting my phone on Friday, I am tempted to go to my AT&T store on Friday morning with my confirmation and pick up my phone. I am not sure if they would sell it to me but I live in a small town that everyone you talk does not like Apple so I may be in luck. What amazes me is they knew from last year that this was going to be hugh so why wasn’t Apple prepared with a minimum of 3mil phones?

  20. Shane

    09/20/2012 at 12:53 pm

    I ordered my IPhone later in the day on AT&T. I did not get a specific date in my initial email but the email that came out over the weekend stated 14-21 days. I had had a pending charge on my debit card that disappeared this morning and AT&T told me today that I may not receive my phone until October 15. I pre-ordered for the first time ever to avoid the crowds. I doubt I will receive mine tomorrow or over the weekend.

  21. Shane

    09/20/2012 at 12:56 pm

    I was also told by the rep that no pre-orders would be receive on 09/21. I guess she lied to me since some will indeed arrive tomorrow.

  22. Hollie

    09/20/2012 at 2:52 pm

    I pre-ordered on the 14th. The lady I did the pre-order with through AT&T told me that my phone would be over nighted to me on the 21st. After confirming my order, I received an email with the status saying 14-21 business days. I just got off the phone with them and of course there’s nothing they can do but I’m livid cause if I would’ve known that, I would’ve went to the AT&T store where there were guaranteed to be in and not pre-order over the phone. AT&T needs to get their crap together and apple as well cause they KNEW that they was going to have MILLIONS of orders. They should’ve manufactured enough. So both AT&T and apple are at fault here.

  23. Dan

    09/21/2012 at 11:14 am

    I also preordered 30minutes after the release friday morning. Had multiple confirmations sayin the package would be delivered today. Called every day this week and they assured me it would be sent until a guy I talked to last night at 8:30PM and he said there was a glitch in the system and it messed up thousands of peoples preorders and let other peoples orders later that day take the place of ours. Real fair isn’t it! Go AT&T. I totally get that it is a popular phone and that it could take time. However, the people who ordered after me should not be recieving a phone after me. Verizon time?

  24. Christy Galich

    09/22/2012 at 12:38 pm

    I ordered both my iphone5 on the 14th said it would be delivered 14-21 days. Then on the 16th i got another email saying my items are not ready to be shipped and will be shipped 14?21 days. WHY preorder these phones when you could have just walked into the store and bought right there and walked out with it…?? I don’t understand this. Now when i go to check on line at at&T it say its on back order and that my order date was 9/16/12 when I have recites that say 9/14/12? THEY TOOK MY $635.00 OUT ON THE 16TH ALSO when the recite said the money wouldn’t be taken out until delivery. What the heck is going on with AT&T?

  25. Sheila

    10/15/2012 at 4:56 pm

    Still waiting on my phone. Ordered 9/14/12 at 10:30- the soonest I could get the site to take my order. Was told by one rep, it shipped, another nope it’s processing. Order my BIL for him that night because he couldn’t and he received his two weeks ago. Can’t get a straight answer from anyone.

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