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Apple's online store and phone system shut down because of volume of iPhone 4 pre-orders

The New iPhone 4
The New iPhone 4

Many Charlotte businesses and individuals met Apple's website and phone lines today with frustration and disappointment. Both were shut down because of the high volume of pre-orders for the new iPhone 4.

Customers clamoring for the iPhone 4 tried to pre-order via the online store and 1-800-MY-APPLE line so they could ensure they get the new phone, which delivers on June 24th.

As an example of the demand for this new phone, apple's servers were overwhelmed so would-be purchasers could not order online, and the 1-800-MY-APPLE ordering line was met with a message that said, "due to extremely high call volumes, we cannot answer your call at this time. We apologize for the inconvenience. Please try your call again later."

So not even the standard, "you might be waiting a while" message was found. Apple's was basically "you have no chance of talking to anyone, so forget it and try later to see if we've figured it out".

You would think that Apple would be prepared for this, since it pretty much happens every time they release a new product or service. Or, maybe it's a marketing tactic to get free press?

It will likely be blamed on AT&T's systems, which Apple's system must talk to in order to determine availability for phone upgrade and account information. But it's not just the AT&T part of the ordering process that failed.

Whatever the reason, the result is frustrated consumers trying to buy something they can't get, which is not ideal for any business.


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