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How to get iPhone 5s in UK: 5 ways to beat the gold iPhone 5s shortage

Matt Egan | Oct. 10, 2013
Why is the iPhone 5s so difficult to buy?

How to get iPhone 5s in the UK: 5 top tips
1. iPhone 5s: Apple doesn't fall far from the tree

Unless someone who owns an iPhone 5s is prepared to sell one for you (in which case see point four), the fastest way of sourcing an iPhone 5s of any colour will be through the Apple Store. Apple will always favour its own storem and understandably so. Why give away profit to a third-party.

So regularly check the website, but also regularly call up Apple Stores in your locale. If a batch of phones comes in you don't want to miss out.

Of course, Apple will sell you an iPhone only unlocked and SIM free. And that is almost always the cheapest way of buying a phone, albeit a way that requires you to stump up cash up front. To get an iPhone 5s on contract you need to go via a telco. In which case...

2. iPhone 5s: Check 'estimated delivery date' - is it true?

When you make a purchase your chosen vendor will give you an estimated delivery date. EE, for instance, currently says 28 October. Here's the thing: there's a very good chance that the vendor doesn't actually know the delivery date. At best it will be operating on promises from Apple, at worst it's a fingers-crossed guess.

Before making a purchase find out how much redress you have if the order doesn't appear anything like on time. Ideally you should speak to an actual human to get a feel for what evidence backs up the proposed date. And in a perfect world you should get a promise in writing.

Remember that you should be able to cancel an order if it doesn't turn up on time, just as you can if you are unhappy after receiving it. But make sure that is agreed before spending money.

The reason I mentioned EE is because that to me looks like a sensible claim - it *is* likely to be able to send you an iPhone 5s in three weeks. But I would take with a pinch of salt any claim by one vendor that it can get you the handset sooner...

3. iPhone 5s: Don't be pressured into an upgrade or contract you don't want

...especially if that is the lever to get you to pay more. When Apple does get stock, I bet you it will make sure that it has the 64GB £750 model in stock. The more expensive the product the more profit is made by manufacturer and vendor.

So they will always be keen for you to spend more. If you have been waiting for a product for a long time you may be tempted to go for the one that is in stock, even if it is not the one you really want. Or worse: you may commit to a contract because the telco can get you a phone cheaper than can Apple.


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