Apple starts shipping the iPhone 12 — but don't expect it to arrive early

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A number of Apple customers are discovering their iPhone 12 orders have started shipping, but while the delivery reports show orders are on their way, the deliveries themselves are unlikely to occur before Apple's release date of October 23.

Following the opening of preorders on Thursday, Apple has been inundated with orders for two of its 2020 flagship smartphone range. Sales of the iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro commenced on October 16, with the sheer quantity of orders pushing estimated delivery dates back for late buyers into November.

For those lucky enough to secure an order within the opening hours of availability, there will be an anxious wait for their orders, which has led some to investigate their order's progress. According to posts on social media, some orders have actually shipped.

Some Apple customers who have checked UPS' tracking service have discovered listings for their orders, with the products "In Transit" to their destination. The same listings do not offer timing for when the delivery will take place, with them labeled as "Date Tentative."

Despite the encouraging signs from the delivery tracking, it is highly unlikely that many of them will result in an early delivery of the iPhones to their new owners ahead of October 23. With previous deliveries, Apple has worked with delivery partners to try and maintain the set release date for its products, and such policies are unlikely to have changed for the latest release.

Only two models of iPhone have been put up for preorder so far, with the iPhone 12 mini and iPhone 12 Pro Max anticipated to be made available to order from November 6, with a launch date of November 13.

While iPhone orders are unlikely to arrive before Apple's street date, customers who also ordered accessories have started to receive their purchases. This includes the newly-announced MagSafe Charger, as well as cases for the new models.