Apple broke with tradition when it declined to make the iPhone 5s available for pre-order after its announcement, and now it’s looking like low stock might be the reason. Sources at the wireless carriers are claiming that launch inventory will be significantly less than expected. “We will have grotesquely unavailable inventory,” said one carrier source, while another claimed that shipments from Apple were extremely disappointing. This might be partly because demand might not be as high for the device. It seems that the iPhone 5C is proving to be much more popular than the higher end model. Unfortunately Apple has provided no information on pre-sales at this point. It appears though that they will have enough inventory to meet demand. The strangest thing is that these availabilty issues might extend past carrier stores. It has been reported that the iPhone 5S will also be hard to find at Apple’s own stores. Out of the shipments going to Apple’s retail locations, 70 to 80 percent will be iPhone 5Cs.
There’s a good chance that these “outages” might be on purpose just to help get the lines at stores even longer. This could explain why Apple didn’t allow for pre-orders on the 5S. I guess we will find out for sure what the problems are on launch day.
Article originally appeared on The Verge