Damian Damjanovski wanted to get his hands on an iPhone 7 as soon as it came out, so last Friday he placed a pre-order with Telstra.
He expected to have a new phone on the day of release, this Friday.
But earlier this week the Sydney advertising executive noticed his order status changed to “on backorder”.
After some wrestling with Telstra’s call centre and its Twitter account, his worries were confirmed:
@Telstra Now I'm on the phone and I'm being told my device isn't going to be arriving on the 16th. Nobody can explain why.
— Damian Damjanovski (@damjanov) September 13, 2016
This is despite placing his pre-order last Friday — the first day pre-orders were possible — and ordering a model which was marked online as “available”, while others were marked “out of stock”.
Telstra admitted today it took more pre-orders than it could deliver on the first day the iPhone 7 hits the streets.
“We’ve seen strong customer demand with pre-order exceeding expectations and expect demand for iPhone 7 Plus to exceed supply initially. Models in Jet Black will also be limited at launch,” a Telstra spokesperson told Business Insider.
Damjanovski was given the run-around by the Telstra support team, which variously told him at different stages that his order was not completed properly or that the website’s “available” status was false, and asked for his order number multiple times.
“We’ve contacted Mr Damjanovski to apologise for the confusion at our end. We’ve let him know that we’ve confirmed the order he placed, and prioritised it for delivery the week after launch day,” a Telstra spokesperson said today.
“Apart from the Jet Black variants, we expect to receive more stock of these models soon after the initial launch. For orders taken as part of our backorder process, we will ship handsets as soon as stock arrives in the warehouse according to a customer’s position in the queue.”
After the telco’s revelation that it could not fulfil its pre-orders on the first day, another customer expressed interest in changing the handset colour on his pre-order to get around the issue. Telstra nixed that solution too, saying on Twitter: “If the order has been completed the customer may incur termination charges.”
An Optus spokesperson told Business Insider that it “has stock for all customers that pre-ordered the iPhone 7 or 7 Plus with us”. Vodafone had not responded at the time of writing. Apple Australia declined to comment.
Damjanovski told Business Insider that Telstra contacted him personally today and that he was satisfied with the solution now in place.
Telstra said that customers in metropolitan areas will usually receive the order the day after shipping, while it may take longer for regional addresses.
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