The iPhone 5S went on sale Friday in eleven countries and territories around the world. The gold-colored model is already back-ordered online. The iPhone 5S went on sale online just after midnight. Within 10 minutes, the ship date slipped to seven to 10 business days. By 12:30 a.m. EDT, the projected shipping dates were already backlogged into October. The Apple store online now says the silver and space gray models will ship in seven to 10 business days in the U.S., but all online retailers and all carriers have pushed back the shipping date for the gold model.
Waiting in line at an Apple store in person didn’t raise anyone’s chances of nabbing a gold iPhone, as a group of die-hard customers learned Friday morning. Early buyers of the iPhone 5S, which went on sale Friday morning, appear to be overwhelmingly choosing the gold-colored model over the two other color options.
The gold iPhone craze comes as no surprise. This is the first time Apple has offered the device in a color other than black or white. It’s also the first time the company is simultaneously releasing two new iPhone models.
The 5S, which was not offered for presale, sells for $199 for 16GB, $299 for 32GB, or $399 for 64GB if buying with a contract.
In China, the iPhone 5S has been available for preorder since Tuesday. Chinese news outlets reported that retailers have already sold all of the gold iPhone 5S models they had in stock. Gold is a wildly popular color in China and India, countries where Apple is hoping to capture a larger slice of the smartphone market.
It’s not clear whether any confused buyers think the iPhone 5S actually comes in real gold instead of its gold-colored aluminum. Deep-pocketed Apple fans can actually buy an 18k gold-plated iPhone 5 from luxury retailer Stuart Hughes for about $35,000.
The phones went on sale Friday in the United States, Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Puerto Rico, Singapore and the United Kingdom.