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iPhone 5S supply almost meets demand

How long will it be before supply actually meets demand? Analyst Gene Munster looks into his crystal ball.

Apple's iPhone 5S is not playing as hard to get.
Apple's iPhone 5S is not playing as hard to get.
Josh Lowensohn/CNET

Searching for an iPhone 5S? Your chances of snagging one have gotten better.

In his latest biweekly survey of 60 US Apple stores, Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster found that availability of the 5S has risen to 90 percent of all iPhone models in stock. That's a huge improvement over 31 percent only two weeks ago -- and 10 percent at the start of October.

At this point last year, the iPhone 5 accounted for 95 percent of all iPhones in stock. However, iPhone 5S availability at AT&T and Verizon are better than that seen for the iPhone 5 at the same period in 2012.

Apple's online store lists a ship time of three to five business days for the iPhone 5S, down from two to three weeks earlier this month. Munster said he believes that supply of the 5S will meet demand in early December, mimicking the same route taking by the iPhone 5.

And what of the iPad Air? Apple shows a ship time of 5 to 7 business days, an improvement from the prior estimate of 7 to 10 days. Consequently, Munster said he thinks that supply of the new tablet will meet demand before the holiday season rings in.