Blog Post

So who else ordered an iPhone 6 in the middle of the night?

Pre-orders for the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus officially kicked off at midnight this morning. That’s Pacific Time, given Apple’s home base in California. So where I live on the East Coast, it was 3 AM. And since my son’s birthday was yesterday, I offered to contribute part of the costs toward a new iPhone 6 Plus for him; he has an iPhone 5 now. Of course, that also meant I was the one to set an alarm for 2:45 AM.

Apple's newest phones: iPhone 6 Plus and the iPhone 6. Photo by Tom Krazit/Gigaom
Apple’s newest phones: iPhone 6 Plus and the iPhone 6. Photo by Tom Krazit/Gigaom

Based on my Twitter stream, I wasn’t the only one hitting the [company]Apple[/company] Store early. Surprise! OK, maybe not.

The real surprise was the challenge to actually place a pre-order: I was online from 2:50 to 4:05 in the morning and the [company]Apple[/company] Store website never loaded past the “We’ll be back” message when the store is down.

Others saw much the same according to their tweets, although people were reporting success with the carrier websites.

In the end — thanks to a suggest from my Twitter-mates — I was able to get a pre-order in for a 16 GB Gold iPhone 6 Plus on [company]AT&T[/company], but not from my computer. It turns out the Apple Store app for iOS was generally working fine for people who couldn’t sleep and my iPad was within an arm’s reach as I, like so many others, was furiously hitting the refresh button on a computer. The phone is due to arrive next Friday.

That order went through around 4 AM and for AT&T customers, that was actually the only Plus configuration available at the time, direct from Apple. I didn’t check other carriers, but I suspect the hints, leaks and rumors of supply constraints for the larger iPhone model may be true.

iphone 6 plus inventory

As I wrote this post, I checked the Apple Store site — sure, now it’s up and running! — and no matter what option I choose, the iPhone 6 Plus availability is 3-4 weeks out. Again, it’s possible that carriers still have remaining stock. A quick check of the smaller iPhone 6 for various carriers and configurations shows plenty of availability; you can still order one today and have it in hand next Friday.

This isn’t the first time I woke early to pre-order a new iPhone, but for some reason, it was the most frustrating. Yes, there’s high demand to be among the first to have the latest Apple handset; that’s to be expected. I really didn’t expect the Apple Store to basically be down for as long as it was. I have no idea when it finally returned since I got my order in and went back to bed just after 4 AM. And the website wasn’t an issue just for me or localized to the East Coast; based on Twitter, people in every U.S. time zone saw the same.

Apple prides itself on the customer experience, so hearing that carrier websites were fulfilling orders while many saw “We’ll be back” in their browser was new to me. I’ll be curious to see if Apple offers any explanation other the expected “unprecedented demand” status.


24 Responses to “So who else ordered an iPhone 6 in the middle of the night?”

  1. AT&T sideswiped me at 3:00 am. Site was totally FUBAR! Same thing at 7 am when I checked in again. At that time I tried Apple and was done in 5 mins. What a process! I always end up with resentment when I buy an iPhone.

  2. I set my alarm for 2:58 with mbAir and iPad at the ready. Woke up at 3:17 (curses alarm set to silent) and ran into wall of “we’ll be back soon” in hundreds of languages (swear I saw it in in Klingon). Went back to bed and woke up again at 5:42. Tried and … Success!
    This was my 3rd time ordering pre-release and experience was middle of the road. Worst was iPhone4 ….lots of store crashes… Never sure it ordered….

  3. JoeSchmoe123

    I looked at the iPhone 6 offering and was struck by their crass exploitation of Moore’s law as applied to RAM. I hope the tech-press blasts them for this.

    Here are the memory options: 16, 64 & 128 gig.

    What everyone needs to be asking is, “Why doesn’t the base iPhone 6 have 32 gig’s of RAM”?

    So this amounts to cattle-prodding customers to pay the extra $100 to go to 64 gig, when all they need is 32 gig. If you also want the large screened iPhone 6, then you need to add another $100.

    So, I see al lot of phones selling for $500. The stock will be going up, and you will be paying much-much more.

    • Big bill3

      Yes, me too. As a long time Android user, I was excited about a possible switching to ios. But wanting 32gb (obviously not available) and having to buy the larger a 64 gb, that iPhone 6 plus will cost $400- it looks like I’ll be returning to Android. F U Apple!

  4. Apple’s site was up for me when I attempted to order, around 6AM EST, but my issues came down to carrier technicalities. Being an AT&T customer, and trying to upgrade using Next, and also being a customer who’s contract so happens to be based out of New York state, the Apple site told me that apparently online orders cannot be made because of those conditions, and that I would have to go to a store to complete my order.

    However, I went to the AT&T site, and met no such restriction. My issue, instead, came in the form of needing a form of payment with the same billing address as the account holder, my mother. Since I don’t live at home, I needed to get her info from her (thankfully she was awake at that hour), and then I could finally get my order placed with no problem.

    Unfortunately, though, since I ordered a 128GB 6 Plus, it looks like I won’t be getting it until mid-October.

  5. Microwaved

    I got up at 3am to order a 6/64 AT&T for my wife via the Apple Store app. The store came up around 3:17am for me and the order went through fine. At 10:00am this morning I convinced myself to pull the trigger on a 6/64 and the order went through without a hitch. Both 6/64 phones are Slate Grey on AT&T. They both have a 9/19 ship date.

  6. Nicholas Paredes

    I tried at 2:45 CST and was shown an unavailable status. I ordered at 6:00 am and the order was showing a 3-4 week date. This was a 6 Plus 64gig. It will be interesting to see how I like this device profile. I had the first Dell Streak and people laughed when I made calls on it.

      • Some of you apple folks are so naive. You will literally take what asshole says at face value and eat it up. Sorry but my android has no security issues, bugs, and does so much more than your iPhone.

    • I don’t see the point of childish comments like this (and that goes for any Apple users who leave similar comments on Android articles or forums. Like, good for you? Seriously, though, I hope you enjoy your phone. I don’t see why you need to rub your sense of superiority in other people’s faces. And yes, it’s only a sense of superiority, because the best smartphone on the market is the one that you want and that does for you what you need it to in a way that satisfies you. For you, it’s clearly your HTC One. For someone else, it’s an iPhone. Why can’t you just let people enjoy what they want to enjoy instead of being rude?

  7. Robert Corbin VARTV

    Ordered 6 64GB Gold around 3:05 EDT via VZW. Site was slow. Preorder went through. Checked again around 3:15 to see if it got better but ended up seeing a “Try again later” message…

  8. the orders were to open @8am (posted all over their site, prior to today), so even if that assumed to be ET – that still 5AM in Cali – why’d you bother getting up at 3AM – FAIL….

    • Actually the website didn’t say this. It said stores open at 8am. By stores they mean brick and mortar.

      I was up for about an hour. Couldn’t get Apple Store to load past we will be back. And couldn’t get Apple Store app to get back “unavailable”. Gave up and went back to bed.

      This morning the version I want isn’t shipping until Oct. I’ll get in line next Friday.