Judging by the huge number of people queueing for the iPhone 4S release a couple of weeks ago, it is fairly safe to say that demand for the iPhone that analysts called a “disappointment” is still strong.
Now, one analyst is pointing to dwindling Best Buy stocks as a sign that stock shortages are creeping up on all iPhone vendors, and that demand is outpacing Apple’s supply chain.
W. Baird analyst William Power told clients that during research, his company checked with a number of Best Buy stores, and many locations are running out of stock…
Baird also goes on to note that stores in less-populated areas were most likely to still have the new iPhone in their inventories, though usually only in the highest capacity. Smaller stores will also have received a lower allocation than larger ones.
“We would note that Best Buy stores have typically been one of the last outlets, behind carrier stores and Apple stores, to have its supply of iPhone devices normalize. This makes the retailer into a proverbial litmus test for iPhone 4S supply, with the current diagnosis being that the demand is outpacing supply.”
The fact that the big retail outlets are running out of iPhone 4S stock is possibly telling, with Apple Stores and carriers also struggling to meet demand for the handset.
Currently, Apple’s online store is quoting two weeks for delivery, while AT&T is quoting 21-28 days. Verizon customers will have to wait 11-18 days to get their hands on an iPhone 4S.
Again, all of this comes after the industry was apparently disappointed with the iPhone 4S, with many expecting a completely new design to be released. The iPhone 4S continues to use the same chassis as its predecessor, but with re-worked hardware on the inside.
Some had thought that buyers would stay away and instead wait for the iPhone 5 to arrive next year. Current sales figures for the iPhone 4S show that, as usual, it’s nearly impossible to predict how well a new Apple product will sell!