Several pundits lamented the iPhone 5 as a lackluster update, but if preorder numbers are any indication, actual customers think it's anything but: the iPhone 5 is already shattering the lofty sales records set by previous generations of Apple's vaunted handset.


Press releases trumpeted unprecedented preorders for the first LTE-equipped iPhone. AT&T was the first out of the gate, announcing that the iPhone 5 is "the fastest-selling iPhone the company has ever offered," with strong sales continuing throughout the weekend. When we reached to Sprint for comment, a representative told us via email that "Preorder sales quickly met our expectations."


Neither company would issue specific preorder numbers, but Apple wasn't afraid to toot its own horn; this morning, the Cupertino company announced that more than 2 million iPhone 5 handsets were sold in the first 24 hours of availability, a blistering pace that more than doubled the previous record-setting rate set by the iPhone 4S.


Indications of the rapid sales first popped up last Friday (Sept. 14), when the estimated shipping date for a preordered iPhone 5 slipped from Sept. 21 to a full two weeks out just an hour or so after preorders were opened. In other words, if you want an iPhone 5 on launch day and haven't preordered one yet, you might want to break out your camping gear. At least eight enterprising NYC souls have already claimed the first spots in line. Record numbers of used cellphones were also traded in the day of the iPhone 5's announcement.


Our own Mark Spoonauer may have said it best on Twitter: "So I guess investors and shoppers didn't get the memo that the iPhone 5 is "'boring.'"


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