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Demand is unprecedented, says company

Apple's new iPhone 4 has a lot going for it -- a gorgeous "retina" display that beats even the toughest Android competition in resolution, the addition of multitasking, an improved camera, Apple's new A4 ARM processor, 802.11n wireless, and more.  Those factors and Apple's hot brand image have helped the company overcome concerns about app censorship and security issues, launching it to early records.

AT&T reports to us that it has received a staggering amount of pre-orders since the process opened yesterday.  An AT&T spokesperson writes, "iPhone 4 pre-order sales yesterday were 10-times higher than the first day of pre-ordering for the iPhone 3G S last year. Consumers are clearly excited about iPhone 4, AT&T's more affordable data plans and our early upgrade pricing."

In total over 600,000 pre-orders were placed.

AT&T's webpage reported "13 million visits" yesterday of customers checking if they were eligible for an upgrade -- three times the previous record, according to AT&T.

Those visits helped crash some of AT&T's servers, denying service to many seeking pre-orders.  Some of these customers were able to place pre-orders at Apple stores.

In light of the incredible demand, AT&T has suspended pre-orders indefinitely.  It may reopen the process if its secures more stock, it says.  It writes, "We are working hard to bring iPhone 4 to as many of our customers as soon as possible."

The terrific sales are a much needed piece of good news for AT&T.  The company is contemplating cuts to its Uverse cable television and internet package due to new government restrictions.  And last week it lost 114,000 iPad 3G owners' emails due to lax security, which allowed security experts at Goatse Security to accomplish a simple harvest of emails, which they then offered up to the media.

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RE: Look over there...
By Suntan on 6/17/2010 10:22:04 AM , Rating: 2
Friendly customer service is just expected. But that doesn’t get a company any points other than an instant “I’ll never do business at that store again” attitude.

FWIW, I had very friendly service a couple months back when I updated to my Smartphone (not at ATT) they were very friendly and courteous during the 15 minutes it took for me to get the phone, have them transfer all contacts etc. and make sure it was properly setup.

Quite frankly, there is no consumer product on the face of the earth that would make me dicker around for 5 hours to buy (let alone to get put on a waiting list) and no CSR could be nice enough (without breaking a couple of vice laws) to keep me interested for that long. Obviously there are a lot of people that would rather spend 5 hours like that then wait an additional 2 weeks after it actually releases to walk into a store and then be able to walk out of the store, but it just sounds ludicrous.

Whether it is continued incompetence on the part of Apple/ATT or an intentional marketing strategy to generate “buzz,” having your systems continuously crash while trying to take customer’s orders is unacceptable. What’s more, praising the company for “how well they handled the situation” is sad.


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