If you're a night owl -- or a very, very early riser -- and don't want to wait on line, you can go online at 12:01 a.m. PT on September 14 to place a preorder with Apple for the iPhone 5.
Otherwise, you can do it the old-fashioned way and wait for the doors on Apple's retail stores to swing open at 8 a.m. local time on September 21.
Apple is hoping that history does not repeat itself, after the company ran into preorder problems with the iPhone 4 and 4S. Both Apple and its carrier partners experienced glitches before customers were able to place their preorders.
Sprint is also making the iPhone 5 available for preorder September 14, at 12:01 a.m. PT for new and existing customers at Sprint.com/iPhone. Along with the online preorder, you can purchase the iPhone 5 in Sprint stores on September 21.
AT&T customers can visit att.com/iPhone to preorder on September 14, or visit an AT&T retail store on September 21. Preorders on September 14 will begin at the same time as for Verizon, Sprint, and Apple.