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When Apple told news outlets it was “blown away” by iPhone 5 pre-orders, something about it didn’t sit right with us. There was something familiar about it, but it rang more hollow than usual from Apple.We think we’ve figured out why. The language Apple used to describe pre-orders of the iPhone 5 is almost the exact same language it used to describe pre-orders of the iPhone 4S.
Here’s today’s statement: “Pre-orders for iPhone 5 have been incredible … We’ve been completely blown away by the customer response.”
Here’s the statement for the iPhone 4S: “We are blown away with the incredible customer response to iPhone 4S.”
There’s a key difference between this year’s statement and last year’s and it might explain why something felt off.
Last year Apple’s statement was part of bigger press release. This year’s statement wasn’t a press release, just two sentences given to certain news outlets.
And last year’s press release had numbers attached to it. Apple announced pre-orders of 1 million iPhone 4Ss, “the most for any new product that Apple has ever launched,” as SVP of marketing Phil Schiller put it in the release.
The year before that, in 2010, Apple announced 600,000 iPhone 4s pre-ordered on day one.
This year, Apple didn’t announce how many iPhone 5s people pre-ordered.
Apple is under no obligation to report iPhone 5 pre-order numbers. And the day isn’t over yet. For all we know it had 2 million pre-orders and Apple is preparing a full release as we write this.
But for now, Apple appears to be breaking from what it’s done in the past and it just feels slightly funny.
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