Apple: iPhone 5 orders topped 2 million in 24 hours

CUPERTINO, Calif. – Orders for the iPhone 5 topped 2 million in their first 24 hours, more than double the amount of its predecessor over the same period.

Apple started taking iPhone 5 orders at 3 a.m. EDT on Friday.

The company also says that while most orders will be delivered on Friday, demand for the iPhone 5 exceeds the initial supply, so some of the devices are scheduled for delivery in October.

The Cupertino, Calif. company’s stock added $7 to $698.28 in morning trading after rising as high as $699.54 earlier in the session.

The iPhone 5 has a bigger screen -4 inches (10.16 centimeters) measured diagonally- that allows room for another row of icons and lets widescreen movies fit better. The calendar will now show five days at a time instead of just three. Previous iPhone models carried 3.5-inch (8.89-centimeter) screens. The phone is also thinner and weighs less than previous models.

Janney Capital Markets analyst Bill Choi said Apple’s announcement Monday "suggests iPhone 5 is running well ahead of iPhone 4S." In a note to investors, Choi reaffirmed his earlier expectation that Apple will sell 7 million to 10 million iPhone 5s by the end of September.

It won’t be an easy feat for Apple to top the breakneck sales pace set by previous iPhones. Apple said last year that it sold over 4 million iPhone 4Ss just three days after its launch on October 14. That launch occurred less than two weeks after the death of Apple’s iconic founder Steve Jobs and as the iPhone 4S went on sale, scores of Apple devotees were still mourning him with candlelight vigils and impromptu memorial ceremonies outside of Apple stores across the globe.

The iPhone 5 will be available at Apple’s 356 U.S. stores starting Friday. It sells for $199 for the 16 gigabyte model, $299 for the 32 GB or $399 for the 64 GB model. Each customer that makes a purchase at an Apple store will be offered free personal setup service, which will help them customize their device.

The phone will be available in more than 22 countries on Sept. 28.

Aside from Apple stores, the iPhone 5 will be available at Apple’s website as well as through AT&T, Sprint, Verizon Wireless, some Best Buy, RadioShack, Target and Walmart stores and certain Apple authorized resellers.

Earlier Monday AT&T Inc. said it set a sales record for the iPhone 5, with customers ordering more of them than any previous iPhone model on the first day of orders and over the weekend.

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