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iPhone’s popularity overheated. Sold out already? SoftBank shops stop taking advance orders

7, 11. 2008

   The iPhones, the mobile platforms made by Apple Computer Inc., are likely to be sold out at the sops of SoftBank Mobile Corp. on the first day the sale is started. Some of the shops are accepting advance orders for the iPhones before they are actually sold, but they are beginning to stop accepting the orders one after another on the ground that "too many advance orders are coming in" and "the public reaction is too overwhelming."

50 inquiry calls a day

Advance orders for iPhones already full
Advance orders for iPhones already full

   "We are not accepting advance orders. We accepted them only on the 10th (of June). We can expect the initial deliveries will be only 50 units of them or so." "Too many advance orders rushed in. We are not accepting them now." "The public reaction is too overwhelming. We can not be responsible for advance orders." These were comments heard from the people at the SoftBank shops.

   SoftBank Mobile will start selling the "iPhone 3G" on July 11, 2008. Some of the SoftBank shops started accepting advance orders on June 10, but now they are beginning abruptly to stop accepting the orders.

   The people at the SoftBank shops sounded troubled when J-CAST News inquired them. Some of them said that there were shops that were peppered with about 50 calls a day to inquire about the iPhone. "We have not experienced such a reaction from the public," a person at one of the shops in Tokyo said. An official in charge of public relations at SoftBank Mobile told J-CAST News that the numbers of the iPhones delivered to the shops were not made public. He said he did not know how many of the mobile platforms were secured. He said about the future receiving of orders:

"(As a policy of the company) No advance orders would be accepted. As it has not yet been decided how many iPhones will be delivered to each of the shops, it could be possible that there might not be enough products to sell to some of the customers who have placed advance orders."

Customers wanting to buy storm into shops on the first day

   The truth seems to be that some of the sales agents were accepting "advance orders" on their own, and they abruptly stopped accepting the orders as it became unpredictable how many units of the product they might be able to put into their stock.

   Some blogger even posted that a telephone call had been received from a shop saying, "Your advance order for iPhone has to be cancelled." (Try and Tested of Asa-no-jo)

   SoftBank Mobile announced on Jun 23, 2008 its pricing plan concerning the iPhone. According to the plan, the 8G model of the 8G and 16G models can be used for a monthly payment of 7,280 yen for 24 months, including the fixed fee for the packet, on the basis of the "White Plan" in which the payment for the mobile platform will be made in installments. "The rate is rather low even if compared with models to follow," said the person in charge of the public relations at SoftBank Mobile. The popularity of the iPhone is certain to be intensified because of the relatively low rate. Some of the shops have even decided to accept advance orders only from those who visit the shops after the sale is actually started. It may well be predicted that customers who intend to buy the iPhone will storm into the shops.

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