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iPhone 4 Buyers Face More Delays

Apple's fulfillment date for pre-orders slips further as AT&T suspends sales for second straight day.
Apple has once again pushed back the date on which customers who pre-order an iPhone 4 can expect to receive the glitzy new smartphone.

According to a notice on Apple's online store, orders placed for an iPhone 4 as of Thursday will not be fulfilled until at least July 14. Apple's original fulfillment date for pre-orders was June 24, but that had slipped to July 2 by earlier this week. Now, it seems, Apple has fallen behind even further.

Apple conceded its e-commerce systems can't keep up with the demand.

"Many customers were turned away or abandoned the process in frustration," Apple said in a statement. "We apologize to everyone who encountered difficulties, and hope that they will try again or visit an Apple or carrier store once the iPhone is in stock," the company said.

Meanwhile, Apple partner AT&T on Thursday continued its suspension of iPhone 4 sales for the second straight day.

The carrier said it would only resume taking pre-sales orders if it can get its hands on more of the devices. "The availability of additional inventory will determine if we can resume taking pre-orders," AT&T said.

iPhone 4 features a number of enhancements over its predecessor, the iPhone 3GS, including higher screen resolution (960 x 640 pixel technology dubbed Retina Display), a front-facing camera for video chats, and a longer lasting battery that affords 40% more talk time. It's also 24% thinner.

iPhone 4 also includes a 3-axis gyro and a sleek new glass and stainless steel case. "iPhone 4 is the biggest leap since the original iPhone," said Apple CEO Steve Jobs as he unveiled the product on June 7 in San Francisco.

The new phone is priced at $199 for the 16GB model, and $299 for the 32GB model, based on a two-year contract. iPhone 4 is available starting June 24 in the U.S., France, Germany, Japan, and the U.K. The preorder period officially began June 15.