Tech Industry

iPhone 5 ship time drops to two weeks

The wait time continues to drop for Apple's latest iPhone, though it's unclear what effect the onslaught of holiday shopping will be.

Screenshot by Lance Whitney/CNET

iPhone 5 buyers now face a wait of just two weeks when ordering the new phone via Apple's online store.

This latest estimate follows a drop to two to three weeks around November 12. Prior to that, buyers had been looking at a ship time of three to four weeks since preorders for the new iPhone kicked off in mid-September.

The declining wait time shows that the supply of the iPhone 5 is slowly starting to catch up with demand, despite manufacturing challenges.

An official with iPhone supplier Foxconn told The Wall Street Journal last month that making the new phone light and thin is "very complicated." Referring to the iPhone 5 as the "most difficult device that Foxconn has ever assembled," the official said at the time that factory workers were still learning how to build it. But he did add that employees were starting to get better at making the phone.

Of course, people who want the new iPhone sooner than two weeks have other options beyond Apple's Web-based store.

The company offers an online reservation system in which you can preorder the phone between 10 p.m and 4 a.m. each night and then pick it from your local Apple Store the following day.

Buyers may also find a shorter wait time by purchasing through another retail outlet or one of the iPhone's three U.S. carriers. In September, I ordered the iPhone 5 through Verizon Wireless and was given an estimated ship time of one month. Instead, the new phone arrived in about a week and a half.

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