iPhone 4 ‘Early’ Release: Accident, or Planned?

As most of you should know by now, quite a few Apple iPhone 4′s have been shipped, with some already having it delivered (see an unboxing here). Two full days early. This has been much more widespread than previous launches. So has Apple lost its touch? Or was it all planned?

Front, back, and side views of iPhone 4 in black.

Advantages of Releasing Early: Less stress on activation servers. In other words, 600,000 people pre-ordered an iPhone 4, and they should receive that on June 24th. That’s 600,000 people (with the potential for more) all activating their iPhone 4′s within roughly the same time. That could bring down the servers. If the servers go down, then you can’t activate the iPhone. Useless iPhone 4 = Lots of mad customers.

Advantages of Releasing as Planned: This one is for Apple. You know the launch that the iPhone 3GS and iPad enjoyed? Where people lined up outside the Apple Store, just waiting to get their new shiny toy? Where tech blogs went insane covering the scene, with pictures, line updates, and how much stock was left? And when the evening news came on, lo and behold there was a story about a new Apple device being released today. The larger tech blogs get to publish their reviews, since they’ve had iPhone 4 all to themselves for a while. Yeah, all that. That gets Apple publicity; free publicity. And Apple likes that.

Closeup photo of stereo minijack and second microphone on top edge of iPhone 4.

So as we wait for the retina, FaceTime, ooey-goodness that is iPhone 4, I have to ask: How did these people get this lucky.

Post a response / What do you think?