iPhone SE Launch Day Overshadowed by Tesla Model 3

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Apple launched the iPhone SE today in the United States and eleven other countries and territories, prompting a number of early adopters looking to get their hands on the refreshed 4-inch smartphone to line up over the past twenty-four hours.

Early morning lines for the iPhone SE could be found in a handful of major cities, ranging from Sydney, Australia to Miami, Florida, but many other Apple Stores had no queues whatsoever as excitement was unsurprisingly more tepid compared to the launch of a flagship smartphone like the iPhone 6s.

Miami-Sydney-iPhone-SE

iPhone SE lines in Sydney, left, and Miami, right (Images: Nick Sas/Julio Perera)

In fact, the launch of the iPhone SE was arguably overshadowed by Model 3 reservations, which began today at Tesla stores and galleries, some of which are located directly adjacent to or within close proximity to Apple retail stores.

At the Tesla store in the Bellevue, Washington shopping mall pictured below, for example, the queue at around 10:30 a.m. local time was significantly longer than many of those outside of Apple Stores today.

Meanwhile, the Tesla Model 3 reservation queue in Düsseldorf, Germany actually extended past an adjacent Apple Store earlier today.
iPhone SE reaction has been mixed in Asia, where the smartphone launched to little fanfare in Japan but reportedly received over 3.4 million pre-orders in neighboring China. The low-cost smartphone is expected to be particularly popular in emerging markets such as India and Pakistan.

Investment bank Piper Jaffray performed a spot check of iPhone SE stock in select American markets and found that 90% of stores had the device in stock:

We checked 100 Apple Stores in NYC, LA, Dallas, and Minneapolis market areas for availability of the Space Gray iPhone SE 16GB and found that 90% of stores checked had the device in stock. We did spot checks for other device colors (Gold, Rose Gold, Silver) in about 25 stores and found a similar ~90% availability.

For new orders, Apple currently lists delivery estimates of between April 6 and April 21 in the U.S. depending on the iPhone SE size, color, and carrier selected.

Related Roundup: iPhone SE 2020
Tag: Tesla
Buyer's Guide: iPhone SE (Neutral)

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
60 months ago
People are lining up outside for the iPhone SE? Seriously??
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
60 months ago
"overshadowed" - seriously?!
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
60 months ago

People have been able to buy this phone for years, it's called the iPhone 5S.

No ... it's not. That's like saying the iPhone 6 and 6s are the same because they have the same body and screen size.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
60 months ago
The iPhone SE is not a "line up in the queue" type of release. This should not have come as a shock to anyone.

I just went over to my Apple Store to try to get my hands on a 9.7" Smart Keyboard Cover. Both sizes were completely sold out, and there were tons of people at all the tables. So did the Apple Store traffic where I live overshadow the Tesla 3 launch?
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
60 months ago

People have been able to buy this phone for years, it's called the iPhone 5S.

The iPhone 5S was missing a lot that the SE has, so no you haven't been able to buy it for years.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
60 months ago

People have been able to buy this phone for years, it's called the iPhone 5S.

Wow, I definitely would have upgraded to the 5s from my 5 if I had known that the 5s had an A9 chip with 2GB of RAM. Stupid me skipped the 5s for the 6 and only got an A8 processor with 1GB of RAM!

Now to figure out why Apple lied and told everyone that the 5s had a mere A7 inside of it...
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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