With June 24, Apple's release date for the iPhone 4, nearly upon us, Apple fans who managed to preorder the smartphone are announcing they've received notification that the shipping process has begun.
"Just got my shipping notification from AT&T for my iPhone 4," tweeted Twitter user randyohara.
"AT&T says my iPhone 4 is shipping today! Fedex tracking number! Yippie!" Twitter user prolTberg followed.
On June 15, Apple, AT&T and retailers Best Buy and RadioShack began accepting preorders for the iPhone 4. Response was so great that the Apple site, which began taking orders around 4 a.m. ET, was temporarily overwhelmed, forcing Apple to put up a virtual "We'll be back soon" note.
Explaining the record-breaking number of requests it had received, Apple later in the day apologized to anyone who was deterred by frustration or technical glitches.
"Yesterday Apple and its carrier partners took preorders for more than 600,000 of Apple's new iPhone 4. It was the largest number of preorders Apple has ever taken in a single day and was far higher than we anticipated, resulting in many order and approval system malfunctions," Apple stated on it site. "Many customers were turned away or abandoned the process in frustration. We apologize to everyone who encountered difficulties, and hope that they will try again or visit an Apple or carrier store once the iPhone 4 is in stock."
However, anyone planning to still put in an order for a 16GB or 32GB black iPhone 4 should note that the earliest they'll begin shipping, per the Apple site, is July 14. A white version of the phone is currently unavailable for either online preordering or in-store pickup.
Come June 24, however, a few shoppers may have luck stopping by an AT&T retail store - as many did on June 15. AT&T told Boy Genius, "We will have devices available on a first-come, first-serve basis in our stores beginning on June 24."
Apple CEO Steve Jobs, introducing the iPhone 4, called it "the biggest leap since the original iPhone." It's slimmer than the iPhone 3G S, features a longer battery life, a better main camera, as well as a second, front-facing camera for video calls, a proprietary A4 processor and a 3-axis gyroscope, which will make for cooler gaming.
But the Apple fans who pre-ordered already know that.
"Yay! My iPhone 4 has shipped!" Tweeted Bodie28. "Woo hoo!"