Apple announced June 23 that the white iPhone 4 would be delayed until the second half of July due to unanticipated manufacturing challenges. The iPhone 4 black models will apparently be available when the device launches on June 24. Unanticipated demand for the iPhone 4, which included 600,000 orders on its first day of presales, led to a combined meltdown of both AT&T's and Apple's ordering systems. Meanwhile, an analyst from Barclays Capital predicts that the iPhone will launch on Verizon's network in early 2011.
Apple announced June 23 that its white-bodied iPhone 4 is encountering
production delays, delaying shipment by several weeks. The black iPhone 4,
which the company tried to position as the choice of most customers, has
apparently not suffered the same problems.
"White models of Apple's new iPhone 4 have proven more challenging to
manufacture than expected," read a June 23
statement posted on Apple's Website
, "and as a result they will not be
available until the second half of July. The availability of the more popular
iPhone 4 black models is not affected." The smartphone is scheduled to
launch June 24.
The iPhone 4 retails with a two-year contract for $199 for a 16GB version,
and $299 for the 32GB version. Features include a front-facing camera for video
conferencing and the new iOS4 operating system, previously dubbed "iPhone
OS 4," which includes features such as multitasking.
Rampant demand for the next-generation iPhone 4, apparently unanticipated by
both Apple and U.S.
carrier AT&T, led to both companies experiencing an ordering-system
meltdown during the smartphone's initial period of presale availability.
Reports circulated online of AT&T employees forced to jot customers' details
on paper after store computers crashed, and visitors to Apple's Website
encountered error messages.
600,000 customers who ordered iPhones on June 15
, the first day of presales,
"was the largest number ... Apple has ever taken in a single day
and was far higher than we anticipated, resulting in many order and approval
system malfunctions," read a June 16 statement on Apple's Website. "Many
customers were turned away or abandoned the process in frustration. We
apologize to everyone who encountered difficulties."
In a June 22 research note, Barclays Capital analyst James Ratcliffe
suggested that, based on "channel checks by our communications equipment
and semiconductor research partners," the
iPhone will launch on Verizon in early 2011
. He also predicted that between
500,000 and 1 million AT&T customers, dissatisfied with their carrier
service, could jump with their iPhones onto Verizon's network.
The "iPhone would be a plus for Verizon, but not a seismic industry
change, given the relative stickiness of smartphone customers," Ratcliffe
wrote in his note, circulated among the firm's clients. "[The] primary
source of Verizon iPhone [subscribers] would be pent-up demand by existing
Verizon [subscribers]." Because of that, the number of postpaid Verizon
subscribers would only increase by 900,000 in 2011, he predicted, even as
Verizon activated more than 9 million new iPhones by the end of that year.