iPhone 5 shipping estimates improve to 2-3 weeks

Availability of the iPhone 5 is finally improving as Apple, its suppliers and contract manufacturers bind forces to improve manufacturing yield rates. When Apple in September started accepting online pre-orders for the device, shipping times quoted on the online Apple Store fell to 3-4 weeks within 45 minutes.

Availability would not improve until today. Now, after admitting to falling behind the iPhone 5 demand, Apple’s contract manufacturer Foxconn has been hard at work with suppliers like Sharp to remove bottlenecks. Analysts who last week surveyed over a hundred Apple Stores, found out the device could be consistently available within 2 to 3 weeks.

We’re happy to report that today, estimated shipping times for new iPhone 5 orders on the online Apple store dropped to 2-3 weeks, another sign of the iPhone maker and its supply chain slowly beginning to catch up to strong demand for the popular device…

A quick glance over the iPhone 5 listing on the US online Apple store reveals a 2-3 week delivery estimate for new orders, down from the previously quoted 3-4 weeks estimate.

It’s welcome news to folks who’ve been on the lookout for Apple’s new phone.

It remains to be seen when Apple will reach the supply-demand balance.

Apple CEO Tim Cook told analysts on a conference call last month that “the demand for iPhone 5 is extremely robust”, adding that Apple is “in a significant state of backlog”.

If history is an indication, it’s gonna be awhile before we see estimated iPhone 5 shipping times dropping from weeks to days. The iPhone 4S shipping times had been sitting at 1-2 weeks for nearly three months before inventory levels improved.

Let’s not forget that Apple has yet to release the iPhone 5 in China and a number of other markets worldwide. The aggressive roll-out should see the company launching the device in over a hundred countries and across 240 carriers by year’s end.

What’s important, I think, is that Apple is finally making progress toward meeting demand for the handset, no?