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iPhone 5 orders top 2 million in 24 hours

Four days before the iPhone 5 goes on

Four days before the iPhone 5 goes on sale in stores, buyers wait outside Apple’s Fifth Avenue store. (Sept. 17, 2012) Credit: Getty Images

Orders for the iPhone 5 topped 2 million in their first 24 hours, more than double the amount of its predecessor over the same period.

Since Apple started taking iPhone 5 orders on its website at 3 a.m. on Friday, buyers who have a two-year service agreement with AT&T, Sprint or Verizon Wireless have been able to order the phone for $199 (16 gigabyte model), $299 (32 GB) or $399 (64 GB model).

Apple said Monday that while most orders will be delivered on Friday, demand for the iPhone 5 exceeds the initial supply. As a result, some of the devices are scheduled for delivery in October.

The Cupertino, Calif., company's stock added 1.2 percent, or $8.50, to close at $699.78 Monday.

The iPhone 5 is the first major revision of the iPhone's screen size since the smartphone was introduced in 2007. The new iPhone has an elongated screen -- 4 inches measured diagonally -- that allows room for another row of icons and lets widescreen movies fit better. The calendar will now show five days at a time instead of three. Previous iPhone models had 3.5-inch screens.

The new phone is also thinner and weighs less than previous models. It can operate on fast LTE cellular networks and sports a new processor and updated software.

The record advanced orders on Friday and through the weekend caused T. Michael Walkley, an analyst with Canaccord Genuity, to revise his previous prediction that Apple would sell 6 million of the new iPhones by Sept. 29. He now believes "Apple could ship 9 million to 10 million" in that time, he told investors in a note yesterday.

The iPhone 5 will be available at Apple's 356 U.S. stores starting Friday. The phone will be available in more than 22 countries on Sept. 28.

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