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iPhone 5c cases already showing up for some pre-order customers

Ahead of this week's launch of the iPhone 5c, some customers who pre-ordered the device are finding that their colorful phone covers are arriving just a bit ahead of time.

Apple's silicon-rubber iPhone 5c cases are an integral part in how the company is marketing the lower-cost model, and iLounge reports that some customers are already seeing pre-ordered cases arriving. Apple has been heavily pushing the first-party covers as a way of allowing users to further differentiate their colorful new iPhones.

The 5c case retails for $29 on Apple's site. Its design allows for easy access to all of the iPhone 5c's controls, including the sleep/wake button and volume buttons. The main feature of the case is an essentially polka-dotted section that allows the color of the actual iPhone 5c unit to show through. In total, there are 30 possible phone-cover color combinations.

iPhone 5c cases are now showing a shipping lead time of 1-2 weeks on the U.S. Apple Store. The iPhone 5c, along with the iPhone 5s, will launch on Sept. 20.