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iPhone 7 launch day survival guide: Secret to finding the iPhone 7 Plus, and more

Published Sep 16th, 2016 9:10AM EDT
iPhone 7 Plus Sold Out
Image: Apple Inc.

It’s been a long time coming and now the day Apple fans across the globe have been waiting for has finally arrived: the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus are now available for sale in 28 different markets around the world. Preorder availability began on September 9th and according to three of the four major wireless carriers in the US, demand has been impressive. Apple won’t announce opening-weekend sales this year, but iPhone 7 preorders with carriers have actually managed to top iPhone 6 preorders two years ago.

Of course, not everyone preordered a new iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus, and many people will be out hunting for iPhones on Friday. If you did preorder a phone, what should you expect today? Welcome to the iPhone 7 launch day survival guide, where we’ll tell you everything you need to know about release day.

DON’T MISS: 10 best iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus cases we’ve found so far

First things first: where are the new iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus available for sale? Here are all the markets that will get the new iPhones today: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, UAE, the UK, US Virgin Islands and the US.

Then, on September 23rd, the new models will go on sale in a second wave of markets: Andorra, Bahrain, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Greenland, Guernsey, Hungary, Iceland, Isle of Man, Jersey, Kosovo, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Maldives, Malta, Monaco, Poland, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Slovakia and Slovenia.

Here in the United States, Apple’s new iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus are now on sale in Apple Stores; major wireless carrier stores including Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint; and at some retail partner stores including Best Buy. That’s the good news. The bad news is that according to Apple, there will be no iPhone 7 Plus models at all available for purchase in Apple Stores. There also won’t be any Jet Black iPhone 7 models.

Now, to clarify, if you preordered an iPhone 7 Plus or a Jet Black iPhone 7 for in-store pickup, your iPhone will be there waiting (as long as you received an email notifying you of its availability). Walk-ins are the ones who are out of luck — they’ll only be able to purchase a 4.7-inch iPhone 7 model in either black, silver, gold or rose gold.

But here’s a little secret that most people don’t know about: It looks like there might be a handful of carrier stores that have the iPhone 7 Plus available for walk-ins.

Now before you get too excited, no, you still won’t be able to find a Jet Black iPhone unless you preordered one for delivered today (which would have meant preordering one within the first 2 minutes of preorder availability). But some around across the country may have received limited inventory of gold, rose gold, silver and even black iPhone 7 Plus units.

Lines at stores are also much shorter than they’ve been in recent years, so you shouldn’t have a very long wait ahead of you. (Is demand lower than it has been in the past? Did everyone preorder? Did Apple’s warning about limited availability actually work? We won’t know until Apple announces its September quarter earnings results next month.)

That’s the good news — the bad news is that there are no shortcuts. If you want to score a new iPhone 7 Plus and you didn’t preorder one, your only option is to call all of the stores in your area, see if any have stock, and get there as fast as you can unless you can convince a sales associate to hold a phone for you. If you’re nice, you might just be able to.

As for people on the hunt for a smaller iPhone 7, you should have a much easier time unless you want a Jet Black one, in which case you’re out of luck. And there’s one more thing to note: Apple Stores and carrier stores will be getting new iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus shipments regularly next week, so don’t get too discouraged if you can’t find the model you’re looking for on Friday.

Zach Epstein
Zach Epstein Executive Editor

Zach Epstein has been the Executive Editor at BGR for more than 10 years. He manages BGR’s editorial team and ensures that best practices are adhered to. He also oversees the Ecommerce team and directs the daily flow of all content. Zach first joined BGR in 2007 as a Staff Writer covering business, technology, and entertainment.

His work has been quoted by countless top news organizations, and he was recently named one of the world's top 10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes. Prior to BGR, Zach worked as an executive in marketing and business development with two private telcos.

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