We ran a recent survey asking Cingular wireless stores when they expected to get the iPhone in their shops, if they had a waiting list and how many names were on it. The results were interesting to say the least.
On the first question, the expected arrival date for the iPhone at Cingular stores ranged from June 15th to July generally. Some respondents claimed August and “winter 2007″ as the arrival date for the phone. Apple has cited June 15, but rumors have swirled that this date may be pushed back a bit (we agree and will get to this topic in a bit).
Our second question about wait lists resulted in 64% of stores reporting a waiting list (We called 36 stores for this survey). The remaining 36% said sales were on a “first come first serve” basis. It was apparent to us that stores reps were keeping their own waiting lists as most are compensated on commission basis it makes sense to us that waiting lists would proliferate as the launch date closes in. So it appears that 64% of Cingular reps are industrious capitalists.
The average number of names on each waiting list was 25 people (there are roughly 10,000 Cingular Wireless outlets). We did have one outlier in New York City, which we excluded from our average, that had 1,979 people on its waiting list. Another store said “we cannot give out that figure but the waiting list is running into the thousands”, another store reported that the number of calls for the phone was “indeterminable” as the numbers were massive.
Our take on our quick survey is that demand for the iPhone is probably going to surprise even Apple fanatics in the early days. We expect sell-outs and complaints about lack of availability of the phone. On this point, we have stumbled across some info that leads us to beleive that HonHai is having trouble manufacturing to schedule and is running behind due to some part delays. It appears that the initial 12 million unit run rate will not be available by June 15. Get your iPhone if you can…