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AT&T already sold out of launch day iPhone 3G S pre-orders

post #1 of 191
Thread Starter 
Signaling a likely repeat of Apple's iPhone sell-outs of the past two years, AT&T is already warning that those making iPhone 3G S pre-orders that they won't get their handsets on launch.

The US carrier's internal sales system is asking staff to tell customers that any pre-orders made on Saturday the 13th or later won't ship on launch and instead will reach retail locations between 7 and 14 days after the order is made, overshooting the release date.

Those who delayed their pre-orders long enough but who still want an iPhone 3G S the same day will have to wait at an AT&T (or Apple) store until regular availability starts at 8 a.m. rather than the 7 a.m. early access time touted earlier this week, Boy Genius hears. Any pre-orders, however, will receive an e-mail once their device is in stock.

While unfortunate for those who hadn't already set aside money for the faster, more feature-laden Apple smartphone, the sell-out bodes well for early sales, which will include not only retail pick-ups but, unlike last year, online pre-orders. Some had feared that high upgrade fees for customers who bought a previous iPhone too soon to qualify for a full discount would deter many from queuing up in the same way they had in 2008.

Besides Apple and AT&T outlets, Best Buy and Walmart locations should also have the iPhone 3G S for sale on June 19th, albeit with regular store hours.
post #2 of 191
Any idea if this is also true for pre-orders through the Apple website?
post #3 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by creeman View Post

Any idea if this is also true for pre-orders through the Apple website?

The Apple website VERY clearly says on each page of the pre-order that pre-registering for an iPhone through the web site DOES NOT GUARANTY the availability at the Retail Store -- although Apple will allow those who are pre-registered in at 8 am to pick up their iPhones while the regular sales line will start processing at 10 am. You are pretty much in good shape to pick it up at Apple stores instead since they ship hundreds (thousands in some stores) of units, whereas ATT gets a smidgen of them (20 - 100 per store for the 3G launch last summer)

You can also purchase your iPhone 3Gs at the Apple Online Store -- as of this week they were delivering them to you ON the 19th -- that apparently is also already back to the 23rd according to the Apple Forums on the iPhone threads...

Just a reminder to everyone -- if you have ANYTHING at all that has to be fixed on your ATT line, the sale will NOT go through at the Apple stores -- i.e. you can upgrade your own line, or buy a new line of service, but you can't switch phone numbers, nor do anything like move one line from a family line to your iPhone line, etc....all that has to be done at ATT stores.
post #4 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by creeman View Post

Any idea if this is also true for pre-orders through the Apple website?

Yes, I was talking to an Apple Tech on the store chat because I wanted to switch from a reservation to just getting it shipped to me and she said the following.

\tYou are chatting with Yolanda, an Apple Expert
\tHi, my name is Yolanda. Welcome to Apple!
\tYou: Hello, Earlier in the week I preordered an iPhone and decided to reserve it at the store, unfortunately I wont be able to pick it up at the store. Can I now just re-preorder it and have it shipped to me? Or will there be a problem?
\tYolanda: Good evening.
\tYolanda: How may I help you today?
\tYolanda: You can call Customer Service to cancel the order.
\tYolanda: If you don't show up on the 19th, that is okay acutally.
\tYolanda: The numbers of orders has exceeded the first shipments to the stores.
\tYolanda: Meaning we are expected to not have enough on the 19th to give out anyway.

\tYolanda: its okay if you go in a day or two later for pickup.
\tYou: Okay, thank you very much
post #5 of 191
Sales will be much larger than the 3g when it came out. So much for all the whining from nay sayers about upgrade costs.
post #6 of 191
I was hoping to pre-order my iPhone 3G S from the Apple Store and have it delivered to my house, and even saved the phone into my "Saved Items" on the Apple site, which still says it will be delivered on the 19th. Somewhat sad that it wont be here on the 19th, but oh well.
post #7 of 191
I pre ordered my 32GB iPhone 3GS around 12pm eastern on Tuesday, June 9. I really hope that I pre ordered early enough to get it on the 19th. From what I gather from this article, they will be shipping the iPhones on the 19th, but my order confirmation says

Quote:
Pre-orders for iPhone 3G S will be shipped with overnight priority and will be processed to arrive as early as June 19, 2009, if submitted by 12 p.m. noon C.T., June 17, 2009.

I guess I will find out next week.
post #8 of 191
Quote:
Signaling a likely repeat of Apple's iPhone sell-outs of the past two years, AT&T is already warning that those making iPhone 3G S pre-orders that they won't get their handsets on launch.

What AT&T is really trying to say is this:

"We don't want to carry so much inventory of the (goddam bandwidth hogging!) iPhones as to distract our employees from selling other brands of smartphones to our (we got them in the store their OURS NOW!) customers"
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post #9 of 191
What do you think about customers who aren't pre-ordering? A few members of my family and I are planning on purchasing iPhones next weekend but because you can only pre-order one at a time we're expecting to wait in line. Do you think they'll save some inventory for those who are purchasing the day of?
post #10 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by mkantro View Post

What do you think about customers who aren't pre-ordering? A few members of my family and I are planning on purchasing iPhones next weekend but because you can only pre-order one at a time we're expecting to wait in line. Do you think they'll save some inventory for those who are purchasing the day of?

the will have inventory to sell, after all they did announce that every store will have 2 lines, one for pre-orders and one for people without.
post #11 of 191
Why the rush? I'll happily lounge around and wait for the first couple of (inevitable) class action law suits to be resolved before I get mine.
post #12 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

Sales will be much larger than the 3g when it came out. So much for all the whining from nay sayers about upgrade costs.

I was just thinking that. Imagine the supply problem if all 3G owners were eligible immediately. I'm pretty sure the different upgrade dates are party to reduce strains on supply, partly to reduce strains on the network, and partly to make sure there's an increase in GAAP income every quarter.
post #13 of 191
Why would anyone order this thing and then go make a line at the store? AT&T will ship it free to your house and the Apple store will ship it to your house or place of work, all for free.
post #14 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by fraklinc View Post

Why would anyone order this thing and then go make a line at the store? AT&T will ship it free to your house and the Apple store will ship it to your house or place of work, all for free.

I guess people want to play with it that extra 6 hours ahead of time. \
post #15 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by fraklinc View Post

Why would anyone order this thing and then go make a line at the store? AT&T will ship it free to your house and the Apple store will ship it to your house or place of work, all for free.

Because you've been waiting to get one since the original came out, and you want it at 7am in the morning not whenever the delivery dude shows up. It's geeky and fanboyish (not that any fanboys/girls post on this site ) but it's fun.
post #16 of 191
I bet those Palm execs are wishing that all this talk on these Apple rumor sites regarding pre-orders, were wishing they were actual "Pre Orders"!

Guess with all this pre-orders talk, the boys at Apple don't have to worry about "Preness envy"!

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post #17 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by MacTripper View Post

What they are really trying to say is this:

"We don't want to carry so much inventory of the (goddam bandwidth hogging!) iPhones as to distract our employees from selling other brands of smartphones to our (we got them in the store their OURS NOW!) customers"

You can always walk into a Sprint store for the Pre. The lines were sparse on it's opening. I'm sure they'll be three or four bored sales personnel ready to do something.
post #18 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by DHKOsta View Post

and partly to make sure there's an increase in GAAP income every quarter.

They have chosen to defer revenue recognition for the iphone, so they will recognize revenues each quarter no matter when the phones are sold.

That said, any educated investor pretty much ignores GAAP. The first thing you do with GAAP financials is back out the non cash charges and add in the cash items that are deferred. The most important figure is Free Cash Flow, and that IS influenced by when a sale is made, or more accurately, whenever AT&T and the other carries make the subsidized payments. At that point Apple has the money to spend, invest, or payout as a dividend, even if the revenue will not be booked under GAAP for another two years. There is an old saying that you can spend cash but you can not spend net income.
post #19 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

Sales will be much larger than the 3g when it came out. So much for all the whining from nay sayers about upgrade costs.

I have a bad feeling about the launch weekend. I have seen steady bandwidth upgrades across the country this year, but I am afraid its not enough. Then there are still issues with cities that are already over populated. Then there is an issue with account activations. The first year was certainly an issue and the 2nd year was pretty good for pretty much everyone, with most of the complaining coming from having to wait a few hours for activation when they tell you it could take up to 24 hours. Im certain this year will sell more than 1M for the weekend. Can AT&T handle it within reason?


Quote:
Originally Posted by bonklers View Post

the will have inventory to sell, after all they did announce that every store will have 2 lines, one for pre-orders and one for people without.

If they have same number of employees for each line and we assume that the pre-order has reduced several minutes from each purchase you may have to get there extra early to have a shot if you dont pre-order.


Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

You can always walk into a Sprint store for the Pre. The lines were sparse on it's opening. I'm sure they'll be three or four bored sales personnel ready to do something.

I wonder if AT&T/Apple will sell more than 50k units and if it will be considered a failure because they didnt sell 10x the amount they did sell.
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post #20 of 191
I pre-ordered my 3G S from Apple.com for pickup at my local store the day of launch. So as long as I get there by 8 AM and have my pre-order print-out, I should be OK, right?
post #21 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

I have a bad feeling about the launch weekend. I have seen steady bandwidth upgrades across the country this year, but I am afraid its not enough. Then there are still issues with cities that are already over populated. Then there is an issue with account activations. The first year was certainly an issue and the 2nd year was pretty good for pretty much everyone, with most of the complaining coming from having to wait a few hours for activation when they tell you it could take up to 24 hours. Im certain this year will sell more than 1M for the weekend. Can AT&T handle it within reason?

I'm not worried about the launch this year. Last year was a disaster, in part, because they launched iPhone OS 2.0 at the same time. As a result, a lot of the installed base was upgrading the firmware, which required re-activation.

This year, the firmware comes out 2 days early (thanks to the WWDC and torrents, it's been installed by quite a number already). In addition to just being better prepared this year as a routine, many of the iPhones are being sent out via pre-order...and many iPhones will be sent to far more locations than last year.

All the pre-order iPhones will have the first stage of activation already completed, so it will just be the second stage that will need to be completed.

Furthermore, we're going to see many more people upgrading this year rather than first time buyers on day one. These people already have their AT&T accounts, iTunes, and everything else ready to go.

As far as AT&T carrier service goes...

If you get a 3G S, and live in certain areas, you're going to see an improvement. Contrary to what people think, AT&T has been rapidly improving their service capabilities around the country and are aggressively continuing to do so. So while this launch may result in a little bit of a setback in some areas, overall AT&T is getting its act together.
post #22 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mazda 3s View Post

I pre-ordered my 3G S from Apple.com for pickup at my local store the day of launch. So as long as I get there by 8 AM and have my pre-order print-out, I should be OK, right?

Yes. In reality -- Apple stores get THOUSANDS of iPhones in stock on launch day -- provided something doesn't go wrong with shipping -- and they will take care of all pre-orders first. They will also have regular phones ready to go at 10:00...That doesn't mean that by 11:00 both sets of stock aren't sold out -- but if you go when the store starts their pre-order sales, you will be good to go.

As to waiting in line -- Apple has a notoriously dedicated fanbase who will do that for iPhones or the launches of new macbooks too -- there was a line at my local Apple Store when their Macbook Airs first came in -- and they sold them all in an hour.

I haven't seen that kind of dedication to any other computer company. Iphone = Apple = fanbase. Pre = Sprint? = who cares.

You can bet that the iPHone 3G S launch will be just as big as their other launches have been,

As to the Broadband question -- how many of the iPhone 3G S phones do you think are going to be new activiations on top their exisiting user base -- and how many are iPhone and iPhone 3G users that are upgrading or trading up....I will bet that's the larger number.

Last year in line at the Apple Store in Ann Arbor, MI, not one single person among the people I was standing with in line was getting a new activation -- all of them were upgrading from their original iPHones from the year before, and even used their iPhones to read the updates on the stock for the store on-line as the supplies started to dwindle.

That is fan dedication. And that is the disposable income market that Apple has long gone after.
post #23 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by macslut View Post

I'm not worried about the launch this year. Last year was a disaster, in part, because they launched iPhone OS 2.0 at the same time. As a result, a lot of the installed base was upgrading the firmware, which required re-activation.

This year, the firmware comes out 2 days early (thanks to the WWDC and torrents, it's been installed by quite a number already). In addition to just being better prepared this year as a routine, many of the iPhones are being sent out via pre-order...and many iPhones will be sent to far more locations than last year.

Good points, but I recall a lot of people with AT&T accounts moving to the iPhone 3G having to wait longer than new accounts for activation.

I also hope that the GM build they released on Monday is not the finale build set for next week. While its much more stable than the v2.0 they released last year, there are still some stability issues that werent present with the last 9 months on v2.0 builds. Still, its pretty damn good and will be the most stable build for an iPhone release to date.
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post #24 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by RonAnnArbor View Post

Yes. In reality -- Apple stores get THOUSANDS of iPhones in stock on launch day -- provided something doesn't go wrong with shipping -- and they will take care of all pre-orders first. They will also have regular phones ready to go at 10:00...That doesn't mean that by 11:00 both sets of stock aren't sold out -- but if you go when the store starts their pre-order sales, you will be good to go.

As to waiting in line -- Apple has a notoriously dedicated fanbase who will do that for iPhones or the launches of new macbooks too -- there was a line at my local Apple Store when their Macbook Airs first came in -- and they sold them all in an hour.

I haven't seen that kind of dedication to any other computer company. Iphone = Apple = fanbase. Pre = Sprint? = who cares.

You can bet that the iPHone 3G S launch will be just as big as their other launches have been,

As to the Broadband question -- how many of the iPhone 3G S phones do you think are going to be new activiations on top their exisiting user base -- and how many are iPhone and iPhone 3G users that are upgrading or trading up....I will bet that's the larger number.

Last year in line at the Apple Store in Ann Arbor, MI, not one single person among the people I was standing with in line was getting a new activation -- all of them were upgrading from their original iPHones from the year before, and even used their iPhones to read the updates on the stock for the store on-line as the supplies started to dwindle.

That is fan dedication. And that is the disposable income market that Apple has long gone after.

Great post.
while your in line you can print out a copy this review, I found over at MS central mag.
http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2348490,00.asp

Its A good read and a good time to buy a mac.

Good luck on iphone day.

9
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post #25 of 191
I just had Apple ship mine to my house. Says delivers on or before June 19th. I've waited 2yrs for a new phone...I can wait a few hours for it to ship to my house.
post #26 of 191
Is this a marketing ploy to limit supplies on the first day to ensure it sells out? Just to ship more stock in a few days later...

Considering that these iPhones are made in Asia and shipping takes weeks (by sea at least) to get them to the US / Europe / Australia etc., they are probably already in warehouses in the relevant regions.

It makes positive headlines if it does "sell out" but even bigger negative ones if it doesn't!
post #27 of 191
What are up-graders doing with their old 3g iPhones? Is there a place to buy a used one that can guaranty it's not stolen? We want to replace one on ours that was stolen.
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post #28 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by macslut View Post

I'm not worried about the launch this year. Last year was a disaster, in part, because they launched iPhone OS 2.0 at the same time. As a result, a lot of the installed base was upgrading the firmware, which required re-activation.

This year, the firmware comes out 2 days early (thanks to the WWDC and torrents, it's been installed by quite a number already). In addition to just being better prepared this year as a routine, many of the iPhones are being sent out via pre-order...and many iPhones will be sent to far more locations than last year.

All the pre-order iPhones will have the first stage of activation already completed, so it will just be the second stage that will need to be completed.

Furthermore, we're going to see many more people upgrading this year rather than first time buyers on day one. These people already have their AT&T accounts, iTunes, and everything else ready to go.

As far as AT&T carrier service goes...

If you get a 3G S, and live in certain areas, you're going to see an improvement. Contrary to what people think, AT&T has been rapidly improving their service capabilities around the country and are aggressively continuing to do so. So while this launch may result in a little bit of a setback in some areas, overall AT&T is getting its act together.

Are you Yolanda: ?
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post #29 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by city View Post

What are up-graders doing with their old 3g iPhones? Is there a place to buy a used one that can guaranty it's not stolen? We want to replace one on ours that was stolen.

In the UK there are several companies that will buy your old phone for about £200 - just google "mobile recycling". That will cover most of the initial cost of upgrading!
post #30 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by adl999 View Post

Is this a marketing ploy to limit supplies on the first day to ensure it sells out? Just to ship more stock in a few days later...

Considering that these iPhones are made in Asia and shipping takes weeks (by sea at least) to get them to the US / Europe / Australia etc., they are probably already in warehouses in the relevant regions.

It makes positive headlines if it does "sell out" but even bigger negative ones if it doesn't!

No they really sell a ton of these. It may take weeks for the lines to cease.
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post #31 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by brucep View Post

No they really sell a ton of these. It may take weeks for the lines to cease.

It's not a marketing ploy. They put in an order to their Chinese factory for the number they want, and then reorder as needed. It doesn't take weeks to ship -- they fly them FedEx overnight as they get them. Last year, there was a big story in the news when one of the shipments carrying Apple things on FedEx crashed in Asia resulting in no stock for some stores on the east coast.

Apple Stores MUCH prefer you to go buy them in the Apple store, not at ATT -- they can't say that, but they can make it happen by making sure THEY have the stock and that ATT gets minimal stock. The entire idea is to get you to cross-purchase other Apple goods while you are in the store.

Many many people went and bought Macs and Macbooks after their positive experiences with the iPhone they purchased.
post #32 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by RonAnnArbor View Post

It's not a marketing ploy. They put in an order to their Chinese factory for the number they want, and then reorder as needed. It doesn't take weeks to ship -- they fly them FedEx overnight as they get them. Last year, there was a big story in the news when one of the shipments carrying Apple things on FedEx crashed in Asia resulting in no stock for some stores on the east coast.

Apple Stores MUCH prefer you to go buy them in the Apple store, not at ATT -- they can't say that, but they can make it happen by making sure THEY have the stock and that ATT gets minimal stock. The entire idea is to get you to cross-purchase other Apple goods while you are in the store.

Many many people went and bought Macs and Macbooks after their positive experiences with the iPhone they purchased.

Your answer shows no logic in the least.

Why would Apple make sure ANY supplier runs out of phones? The good majority of the US and for that matter the world don't have an Apple store close to them.

Would Apple also hold stock out for BestBuy and Walmart for the same reason?

It can just as easily be Apple & AT&T putting out rumors of shortages to make it more enticing to order early.

You don't have any press release to back up your claims and neither do I. So either one of us could be right.
post #33 of 191
"Rumors of shortages" are just as likely to discourage people from even trying to purchase an iPhone, assuming that vendors will either be sold out or that there will be lines, so I can't see where it's really to Apple's advantage to plant such stories.

I think it's safe to assume that the iPhone is well past the "build excitement with artificial scarcity" phase of its development (if in fact that was ever in play) and that Apple would just as soon have as many handsets as possible at launch, since they'll be able to sell them all. Sell more = good.
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post #34 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by AIaddict View Post

They have chosen to defer revenue recognition for the iphone, so they will recognize revenues each quarter no matter when the phones are sold.

That said, any educated investor pretty much ignores GAAP. The first thing you do with GAAP financials is back out the non cash charges and add in the cash items that are deferred. The most important figure is Free Cash Flow, and that IS influenced by when a sale is made, or more accurately, whenever AT&T and the other carries make the subsidized payments. At that point Apple has the money to spend, invest, or payout as a dividend, even if the revenue will not be booked under GAAP for another two years. There is an old saying that you can spend cash but you can not spend net income.

Can you post the cash flow earnings from last quarter, and cash flow estimates going forward assuming flat sales? I am wondering what the real PE of Apple is = (Market Cap - Cash at hand)/(Rea; earnings based on cash flow - interest on the cash that Apple has on the average). I tried to do this and it came to a ridiculous low of 11.

TIA
post #35 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by addabox View Post

"Rumors of shortages" are just as likely to discourage people from even trying to purchase an iPhone, assuming that vendors will either be sold out or that there will be lines, so I can't see where it's really to Apple's advantage to plant such stories.

I think it's safe to assume that the iPhone is well past the "build excitement with artificial scarcity" phase of its development (if in fact that was ever in play) and that Apple would just as soon have as many handsets as possible at launch, since they'll be able to sell them all. Sell more = good.


You have nothing but speculation to back up your claim and neither do I so at this point my theory is just as logical as yours.

Apple & AT&T do need to do some damage recovery after the outrage by current 3G iPhone owners.

Just speculation on a rumor site.
post #36 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by RonAnnArbor View Post

It's not a marketing ploy. They put in an order to their Chinese factory for the number they want, and then reorder as needed. It doesn't take weeks to ship -- they fly them FedEx overnight as they get them. Last year, there was a big story in the news when one of the shipments carrying Apple things on FedEx crashed in Asia resulting in no stock for some stores on the east coast.

Apple Stores MUCH prefer you to go buy them in the Apple store, not at ATT -- they can't say that, but they can make it happen by making sure THEY have the stock and that ATT gets minimal stock. The entire idea is to get you to cross-purchase other Apple goods while you are in the store.

Many many people went and bought Macs and Macbooks after their positive experiences with the iPhone they purchased.

Agreed
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post #37 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by adl999 View Post

Is this a marketing ploy to limit supplies on the first day to ensure it sells out? Just to ship more stock in a few days later...

Considering that these iPhones are made in Asia and shipping takes weeks (by sea at least) to get them to the US / Europe / Australia etc., they are probably already in warehouses in the relevant regions.

It makes positive headlines if it does "sell out" but even bigger negative ones if it doesn't!

It's doubtful. Unlike Palm and Sprint, Apple and AT&T have nothing to prove at this point. If they run out, it's because more people have decided to get one than was expected.
post #38 of 191
Anyone else get this letter? I hope I get it Friday.
Quote:
To Our Valued Apple Customer:


Thank you for your recent iPhone 3G S purchase at the Apple Online Store.

Due to a technical error, we communicated an incorrect delivery date.

We want to assure you that your iPhone 3G S will deliver on June 19th. You can
track the status of your order at <www.apple.com/orderstatus>.

We appreciate your business, and apologize for any inconvenience.

Sincerely,
Apple Online Store Team

www.apple.com/store
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post #39 of 191
Quote:
Originally Posted by KidRed View Post

Anyone else get this letter? I hope I get it Friday.

If its anything like last year youll be able to track it from when it gets logged into the mail system in China. Kinda cool to see how fast a package can get to you from so far away.
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post #40 of 191
Warning! (off topic security/privacy alert)

Delete your browser History often as a web CSS exploit can read it. No Javascript required.

See here: (site may be overloaded.)

http://www.making-the-web.com/misc/sites-you-visit/

Back to topic.
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