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iPhone 12 preorders are already selling out

Published Oct 16th, 2020 12:38PM EDT
iPhone 12 Pro Sold Out
Image: Apple Inc.

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  • The iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 are available for preorder in various countries, and some models are already selling out in America.
  • The two phones are virtually identical, with the iPhone 12 Pro getting two extra camera sensors and a stainless steel chassis instead of aluminum.
  • Prices start at $799 for the iPhone 12 with carrier offers and $999 for the iPhone 12 Pro.

Apple started selling two iPhone 12 versions online on Friday, following its well-known iPhone launch pattern. The new iPhones go on sale on the first Friday after Apple’s announcement, and they ship to buyers — and launch in stores — a week later. Only, 2020 isn’t anything like previous years. The iPhone 12 launch event came about a month later than it was supposed to, as coronavirus-related lockdowns impacted Apple’s iPhone production schedule. Moreover, only two of the four iPhone 12 models that Apple unveiled earlier this week are available to order. That’s the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro. The iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 12 Pro Max are coming in mid-November, with preorders set to kick off on November 6th.

Even in the year of this horrific pandemic, the only thing that doesn’t seem to change is iPhone demand. The iPhone 12 has started selling out within minutes after preorders opened, especially the more expensive iPhone 12 Pro version.

The iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 are virtually identical when it comes to specs and features. They have the same design and footprint, and they have the same 6.1-inch Super Retina XDR display complete with Ceramic Shield glass. The only design differences concern the metals, the colors, and the cameras.

The iPhone 12 Pro is heavier thanks to that stainless steel chassis, compared to the iPhone 12’s aluminum frame. The Pro also features two additional rear-facing cameras, including the telephoto lens that gives it better digital and optical zoom and the LiDAR scanner that improves low-light photography and AR experiences — Apple ProRAW shooting mode and Night mode portraits are also Pro-only features.

Finally, the iPhone 12 Pro comes with double the base memory, at 128GB compared to 64GB. You’ll have to pay at least $999 for all those extra perks compared to $799 for the 64GB iPhone 12.

Recent checks on Apple’s preorder pages show that many iPhone 12 Pro models are sold out, regardless of color, carrier choice, or storage. You might still find stock that ships on October 23rd or that you can pick up in stores next Friday. But shipping estimates have been extended to anywhere from 5-7 business days to 2-3 weeks for some models.

iPhone 12 Pro
The unlocked 128GB gold iPhone 12 Pro model is sold out on a few hours after the start of preorders. Image source: Apple Inc.

Plenty of iPhone 12 Pro combinations are possible, considering we’re looking at four color options, five payment options (four carriers as well as unlocked), and three storage sizes. The chances are that you might find your desired iPhone 12 Pro version or just settle for one that’s still available. If has run out of stock, you might check with your carrier website as well.

Getting an iPhone 12 is much easier, however. We’ve got five color options for this one, five carrier options, and three storage sizes. But many of them are still available for October 23rd delivery. It’s unclear what the split is between the iPhone 12 and the Pro in terms of inventory, and Apple never shares such details. But the iPhone 12 is still expected to be the best-selling model among the four new iPhones.

The other good news is that Sprint and T-Mobile decided to play along with Apple’s unusual iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 12 pricing scheme. As a result, all four carriers will get you an instant $30 rebate, so the iPhone 12 pricing starts at $799. Go the unlocked route, and you’ll have to pay $30 extra.

Anecdotal evidence from other markets shows the iPhone 12 is a hot seller. Reports from Taiwan said the other day, the iPhone 12 stock for the country’s carriers sold out in 45 minutes. And then there’s this from China:

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.

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