Demand looked like it was going to be heavier than ever leading up to iPhone 5 preorder availability on Friday, and that was indeed the case. AT&T (T) became the first carrier on Monday morning to announce that pre-sales of Apple’s (AAPL) new iPhone 5 set a new record, making it the carrier’s fastest-selling iPhone to date. Apple unveiled the iPhone 5 on September 12th during a press conference in San Francisco, and the phone will launch in the U.S. and other key markets on September 21st. AT&T announced last year that it sold more than 200,000 iPhone 4S handsets during the device’s first 12 hours of availability, but it failed to give pre-sales figures for the iPhone 5. The carrier merely stated that Apple’s new smartphone was its fastest-selling iPhone so far on both the first day of pre-sales availability and over the weekend. AT&T’s full press release follows below.

AT&T SETS SALES RECORD FOR IPHONE 5

Most Successful iPhone Launch Ever

DALLAS, Sept. 17, 2012 — AT&T* set a sales record with iPhone 5 over the weekend, making it the fastest-selling iPhone the company has ever offered.  Customers ordered more iPhones from AT&T than any previous model both on its first day of preorders and over the weekend.

iPhone 5 is still available for preorder at www.att.com/iphone and will be available in AT&T retail stores beginning at 8 am local time on Friday, September 21.

AT&T offers a number of advantages for iPhone 5 customers.

·      AT&T’s network lets you talk and surf the web at the same time.

·      Largest 4G Network. Customers get blazing-fast speeds on the nation’s largest 4G network, covering 275 million people.

·      Flexible Rate Plans.  AT&T doesn’t force customers to switch data plans to get the best device price when they upgrade to a new device and new AT&T customers aren’t forced into a certain plan; they have the flexibility to choose from one of several individual or Mobile Share plans.

More customers choose AT&T for iPhone than any other U.S. carrier.

For more information on iPhone 5, please visit: www.att.com/iphone.

Zach Epstein has worked in and around ICT for more than 15 years, first in marketing and business development with two private telcos, then as a writer and editor covering business news, consumer electronics and telecommunications. Zach’s work has been quoted by countless top news publications in the US and around the world. He was also recently named one of the world's top-10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes, as well as one of Inc. Magazine's top-30 Internet of Things experts.