Reported production problems point to a small first batch.
On Friday, Apple allowed people to start preordering its flagship iPhone X model a week ahead of its November 3 launch. However, those who wanted to receive the tenth-anniversary iPhone on that date had to move fast—the initial supply sold out in minutes.
According to CNET, it took all of 10 minutes for some models to start showing up with a shipping time of two to three weeks, and just half an hour for all models from U.S. carriers to display delivery times of up to five weeks.
Does this all mean there’s massive demand for the iPhone X, compared to the usual iPhone launch-hype frenzy? Not necessarily. For one thing, Apple has not said how big the initial supply is.
Analysts have suggested that the initial run would only be between two and three million units. The iPhone 6, by comparison, sold 10 million units in its first weekend of release.
The company has reportedly been having production problems with the iPhone X, related to the delicate manufacturing process for its facial recognition modules—the ability to log into the phone by looking at it is one of its biggest innovations.
Apple CEO Tim Cook said said earlier this week that the company is “working as hard as possible to make as many as possible.”
Bloomberg reported that the firm was able to speed up the production process by downgrading the accuracy of the phone’s Face ID mechanism, but Apple issued a rare refutation of that report, insisting that it was “completely false.”