Vodafone customers hoping to receive their iPhone 5 pre-orders on the weekend may have been left disappointed, with the telco's much-touted 'weekend delivery' pledge falling short of expectations.
On Friday, Vodafone announced it would deliver "thousands" of iPhone 5 handsets over the launch weekend across the CBDs of Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne and a surrounding 15km radius, in an attempt to meet strong pre-order demand.
"We’ve upped the ante on shipping the iPhone and have put in place a special delivery service so thousands of our customers don’t have to wait any longer," a Vodafone senior rep said at the time.
However, it appears that some Vodafone pre-order customers are still waiting for their handsets, despite falling into the geographical range specified by Vodafone.
One source, located just 3km from Sydney's centre, told CRN his iPhone 5, pre-ordered on the 16th of September, had yet to reach his doorstep, and when contacted, Vodafone customer service staff were 'mystified' by his query about weekend deliveries.
"I hadn't received my phone on Friday so I gave Vodafone a call and talked to one of their overseas call centres," the source said.
"The lady on the phone said they do not deliver on the weekend. I pressed her, telling her about [the CRN article]. She then went away for a couple of minutes and came back to confirm there were no weekend deliveries.
"In total, I spoke to three different people at Vodafone on Friday night and they all said there would be no deliveries on the weekend."
The source's account is echoed on Vodafone's website forum, where numerous customers have posted complaints about not receiving their iPhone 5.
"I have to waste another day waiting at home," wrote one disgruntled customer who had been expecting his phone on Friday.
"I've read that some were told Startrack will deliver theirs [on Saturday]. I called and was told there won't be any delivery until Monday. I'd be pretty angry if they do get theirs tomorrow and mine on Monday. ...What was the point of me preordering so early?"
Vodafone declined to provide the criteria used to decide which customers had been allocated to receive their new phones over the weekend. It told CRN it was working hard to get its pre-orders filled quickly but admitted its weekend deliveries may have fallen short of expectations.
"Given the limited stock and the popularity of the device not all customers who had pre-ordered the device were able to receive it over the weekend," a Vodafone spokesperson said.
Vodafone today said it averaged 25 deliveries per hour over Saturday and Sunday - an approximate 400 deliveries over the two day period.
It declined to provide specific Friday delivery figures, echoing its earlier statement of "thousands", and declined to disclose the total number of handsets shipped over the period.
CRN's source said Vodafone's service had forced him to change carriers.
"It's not about not getting the phone on Friday or the weekend or even next week. I don't mind. It's about being fed what looks to be rubbish by Vodafone," he said.
"How many customers did they lose last year? Well, they are about to lose another one."
Customers still waiting for the iPhone 5 can track their pre-order's whereabouts by entering their order number on Vodafone's website.