Apple (AAPL) opened its virtual doors Tuesday to pre-orders for its highly touted iPhone 4, but folks looking to snap up a white version of the device will have to cool their heels. The company's next-generation iPhone is so far only available in black, Apple notes on its website.
Although Apple doesn't provide an estimated date of arrival for the white version, the computer maker still has time. The phones are not expected to hit the stores until next week on June 24. Analysts, such as Chris Whitmore of Deutsche Bank, have pegged the video-conferencing capable iPhone 4, with its massive upgrade in pixel-count clarity, "another blockbuster."
Besides the typical option of pre-ordering iPhones directly from Apple's website, at one of its many stores, or via carrier AT&T (T), the company this year is spreading the love. Best Buy (BBY) and Radio Shack (RSH) announced they too are taking iPhone 4 pre-orders.
Walmart (WMT), which is carrying iPhones at $97 a pop with a two-year AT&T contract, will also be another distribution point for Apple when the phones reach the stores next week. What is particularly interesting about the Walmart iPhone 4 relationship is that the mass retailer usually appeals to the value-conscious crowd, which runs counter to the premium price tags that electronic devices usually carry on their maiden voyages -- the iPhone 4 is no exception.
Apple's iPhone will not only populate stores in the U.S. on June 24, but also outlets in four other countries -- the United Kingdom, France, Germany, and Japan.
Lines Around the Block
In Japan, where pre-orders for the phones began at 5 p.m. Tuesday, lines snaked around the perimeter of stores and computer servers slowed under the weight of online orders, according to an Associated Press report.
And during the first few days of the iPhone 4 launch on June 24, analyst Trip Chowdhry of Global Equities Research expects Apple to sell an impressive 750,000 smart phones.
But despite his high expectations, he notes most of the sales will be to existing iPhone customers.
"I believe 95% of the sales will be to existing iPhone users," Chowdhry said. "I question whether Apple will be able to attract new users because the weak link is AT&T."
AT&T is the exclusive carrier of the iPhone, even though there is strong demand to see the iPhone on Verizon and other wireless carriers' networks.
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