iPhone 4 Pre-Order Mayhem: AT&T Halts Sales, Apple Expects Late Shipments

Want to be one of the first to get your mitts on the new Apple iPhone 4? You might have to wait a little longer than you expected.

Pre-orders for the fourth-generation of the now-iconic Apple iPhone smartphone went live on Tuesday in the online stores of AT&T and Apple, but the device was met with such demand that the ordering systems to were largely unavailable to consumers trying to access them Tuesday. Now AT&T has halted pre-sales and Apple has extended the delivery date for pre-ordered iPhone 4 devices to July 2, as opposed to the June 24 delivery guarantee Apple offered early on.

The pre-order challenges had both AT&T and Apple scrambling to keep up with demand for pre-orders throughout the day Tuesday.

On AT&T's Web site, clicking the "pre-order now" button for the Apple iPhone 4 results in a pop-up window that reads "Pre-orders for iPhone temporarily suspended." AT&T offered no additional information on why it slammed on the iPhone pre-order brakes, but industry watchers expect that AT&T was unable to keep up with demand.

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AT&T also did not indicate when it would resume pre-orders for the Apple iPhone 4.

One source who claims to be close to AT&T said the carrier did not properly test its pre-order system before iPhone 4 pre-sales went live on Tuesday. According to a Gizmodo report, users have been able to log into other user's accounts and were presented other user's information when they were trying to log in to pre-order the iPhone 4. It was unclear how the glitch happened, but the insider told Gizmodo that may be related to a "major fraud update that went wrong" and ultimately exposed user information.

Apple also appears to be unable to satisfy consumer iPhone 4 hunger, moving back the data when folks who pre-order the device will receive their iPhone. Apple's retail site now indicates that iPhone 4 pre-orders will ship by July 2, nine days after it was originally expected to be delivered.

Apple CEO Steve Jobs unveiled the new Apple iPhone 4 last week at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC).

The Apple iPhone 4 adds a host of new features and functions unavailable in the previous model, the iPhone 3G S. The iPhone 4 offers a higher resolution screen dubbed Retina that is supposed to mimic the human eye; a front-facing camera that enables video calls with other iPhone 4 users; high-definition video recording; multi-tasking; and a gyroscope. It will also be the first iPhone to feature iPhone OS 4 and clocks in at 24 percent thinner than previous iPhone models.

The Apple iPhone 4 runs $199 or $299 for the 16 GB and 32 GB models, respectively, with a two-year AT&T service agreement.