Analysts estimate that Verizon sold over 500,000 iPhones in its first day of pre-order sales. Pre-ordering began at 3 AM ET and continued until 8:10 PM when the allotment set aside for pre-orders was depleted. Verizon confirmed in a press release that it set an all-time first day sales record in the first two hours of ordering, an accomplishment that even beats the high-profile, heavily advertised launch of the Motorola DROID.
Available in November 2009, the DROID sold 200,000 units on its first weekend of sales and 300,000 by the end of its first week. This is only the beginning of the rise of the Verizon iPhone; analysts expect Apple and Verizon will sell over 11 million iPhones in 2011.
Customers who were part of the pre-order should be receiving their handsets today if they ordered from Verizon or Tuesday if they ordered from Apple. At least one lucky customer was able to score his iPhone on Saturday and has enjoyed his status as one of the first iPhone owners on Verizon. Apple and Verizon will open pre-orders again starting February 9 at 3 AM. This time around the pre-orders will be available to all customers, including those ready to switch carriers. The handset will be available in Apple stores and Verizon Wireless stores starting February 10.