CUPERTINO -- 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 (AAPL) started taking iPhone 5 orders on its website at midnight 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 company's stock added 1.2 percent, or $8.50, to close at $699.78 on Monday. Shares topped $700 for the first time in after-hours trading.
The iPhone 5 represents the first major revision of the iPhone's screen size since the first model was introduced in 2007. The new iPhone has an elongated screen -- 4 inches (10.16 centimeters) 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 just three. Previous iPhone models had 3.5-inch (8.89-centimeter) screens. The new phone is also thinner and weighs less than previous models. It can operate on LTE cellular
T. Michael Walkley, an analyst with Canaccord Genuity, said he believes the iPhone 5's "differentiated form factor versus the iPhone 4S" and other improvements should drive strong iPhone 5 sales. The record advance orders on Friday and through the weekend caused Walkley 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 on Monday.
Janney Capital Markets analyst Bill Choi said Apple's announcement Monday "suggests iPhone 5 is running well ahead of iPhone 4S." In a note to investors, Choi reaffirmed his earlier expectation that Apple will sell 7 million to 10 million iPhone 5s by the end of September.
It won't be easy for Apple to top the breakneck sales pace set by previous iPhones. Apple said last year that it sold over 4 million iPhone 4Ss just three days after its launch on Oct. 14. That launch occurred less than two weeks after the death of Apple's iconic founder Steve Jobs and as the iPhone 4S went on sale, scores of Apple devotees were still mourning him with candlelight vigils and impromptu memorial ceremonies outside of Apple stores across the globe.
The iPhone 5 will be available at Apple's 356 U.S. stores starting Friday. Each customer who makes a purchase at an Apple store will be offered free personal setup service, which will help them customize their device.
The phone will be available in more than 22 countries on Sept. 28.
Aside from Apple stores, the iPhone 5 will be available at Apple's website as well as through AT&T, Sprint, Verizon Wireless, some Best Buy, RadioShack, Target and Walmart stores and certain Apple-authorized resellers.
Apple appears to be making headway into the corporate market, a traditional stronghold of now-struggling Canadian company Research In Motion
Yahoo (YHOO) has instituted a new corporate policy that allows employees to pick from a host of smartphones, including the iPhone 5 and Android-based phones such as Samsung's Galaxy S3. Yahoo, which previously gave out RIM's Blackberry phones, will no longer support them, according to the Business Insider blog, which cited an internal memo from Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer.
Yahoo declined to comment.
AT&T, the No. 2 U.S. mobile service provider, said demand over the weekend had made the iPhone 5 the fastest-selling iPhone the company has ever offered.
AT&T did not disclose how many iPhones it had sold, but said the iPhone 5 was still available for pre-order and would go on sale Sept. 21 at AT&T retail stores.
All the phone's carriers, including Verizon and Sprint, showed delays of up to three weeks in shipping the phone Monday.
European carriers also reported brisk sales. France Telecom's Orange said bookings for the new phone "have been very strong, breaking the records of what we saw for the iPhone 4 or 4S." But the carrier said it could deliver pre-orders on time.
Analysts have forecast that Apple will sell more than 30 million iPhones this quarter, including older models, by the end of September.
Reuters contributed to this report.