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Still trying to grab an iPhone 4, seven weeks after it was first launched? You may not be alone, if recent stock inquiries into Apple retail locations are any indication -- the popular handset is still sold out at nearly half of their stores. So much for “Antennagate”…
AppleInsider is reporting that analyst Gene Munster has done a bit of detective work at Apple retail stores this week in an effort to check availability of the iPhone 4 in the wake of the “Antennagate” scandal. Out of 30 stores polled by the analyst, only 16 of them had stock, although they all indicated that they were receiving daily shipments in an effort for supply to meet up with demand.
Having a nearly 50-50 shot at an iPhone 4 is an improvement, though: Prior to July 10, there was absolutely no in-store availability, with 0 out of 20 stores in stock. By July 26, Munster polled five stores and discovered that three of them had the iPhone 4 available.
"We had expected near full in-store availability in the U.S. by now, given it has been several weeks since the iPhone 4 U.S. launch (June 24)," Munster wrote. "Longer than expected supply shortages are not new to the iPhone. As a point of reference, in last year's September quarter conference call, the company indicated that iPhone supply was constrained in most countries through late September or early October due to better than expected demand of iPhone 3GS."
The analyst believes that the “continued limited supply” is a good indication that Apple’s “Antennagate” controversy has failed to take a dent out of iPhone 4 sales, given that supply constraints are not a sign of a production slowdown.
As you’ll recall, almost as soon as the iPhone 4 hit the streets on June 24, users began noticing a signal attenuation drop when the handset was held a certain way, which was infamously dubbed the “death grip.” Apple mostly blew off the complaints at first, suggesting that users were holding the device wrong and that a Bumper or case eliminates the non-issue. Continued media coverage of the “problem” led Apple to announce it was giving free cases to all iPhone 4 buyers, and the situation has been largely quiet ever since.
Despite the controversy, the iPhone 4 is Apple’s fastest-selling product in history, racking up a record 3.7 million units sold in the first three days. Munster believes that number will hit 11 million units sold worldwide in the September quarter.
Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter