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iPhone 5 pre-order dispatch slips to 3-4 weeks

The iPhone 5 isn't out yet, but already pre-order demand is pushing back delivery estimates.

Phwoar, that iPhone 5's a bit popular, eh? Apple's newest phone isn't even on sale yet, but already pre-order demand has pushed delivery estimates back by several weeks.

At the time of writing, if you head over to Apple's iPhone 5 pre-order page, both the black iPhone 5 and the white option are listed with a 3-4 week wait time. That applies to every capacity option (16, 32 and 64GB are your choices), and would see prospective buyers waiting nearly a month for delivery, well beyond the phone's official release this Friday -- that's in two days' time, folks.

Earlier today, several models were listed with a 2-3 week wait time, so the estimates are clearly in flux. I'd recommend checking the page for yourself to see what the latest dispatch times are.

So how do I get one?

If you've got at least £529 burning a hole in your pocket, your chances of getting an iPhone 5 this week are still good. If you visit an Apple store early on launch day -- the phone goes on sale at 8am -- you'll likely be able to nab one. Just steer clear of the London flagship shops in Covent Garden and Regent Street, which will be swamped with Apple fans.

Carphone Warehouse is usually a good bet -- call ahead and see if your high-street shop will be selling the iPhone 5 on Friday, and if you're trying to buy SIM-free, make sure the phones on sale are unlocked options. Demand will hot up in the days following the iPhone 5's launch, but if you move quickly come Friday, you should have a shiny new toy for the weekend.

The iPhone 5 is another divisive product from Tim Cook and company. While it lacks big new features, it's a more polished and refined iPhone that anything we've seen so far. Our review calls it "the best iPhone to date", claiming that it's "easily one of the best smart phones out there".

What are your thoughts on Apple's latest effort? Will you be waiting in line on launch day, or strolling smugly past the queues with your latest bit of Samsung hotness? Tell me in the comments or on our Facebook wall.

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