We’re fully expecting the iPhone X pre-order and launch period to be chaotic, and Apple wants its iPhone Upgrade Program members to have the smoothest experience possible. For that reason, Apple is pushing IUP members to ‘get a head start on your upgrade to iPhone X’ starting Monday, October 23, ahead of pre-orders on Friday, October 27.
Get a head start on your upgrade to iPhone X on 10.23. Use the Apple Store app on your iPhone to get ready for pre-order so you can speed through checkout on 10.27.
The ‘head start’ on Monday appears to only apply to customers already enrolled in the iPhone Upgrade Program and doesn’t necessarily guarantee launch day inventory. The process instead is intended to let upgraders complete the loan eligibility process through Apple (which relies on Citizens One behind the scenes) before the official pre-order period kicks off at 12:01 am PDT on Friday, October 27.
This lets current iPhone Upgrade Program customers cut down on the checkout process time and complete the transaction on Friday as fast as possible; customers buying through carrier upgrades or without a contract already have fewer steps at checkout.
The ‘head start’ period doesn’t seem to apply to new customers wanting to join the iPhone Upgrade Plan, however, so you’re best bet on getting the fastest checkout experience is sticking with your current plan for iPhone X if possible. Apple notes on its Upgrade Program website that iPhone orders may be limited and “will be determined on a first-come, first-served basis.”
Apple also improved its iPhone Upgrade Program for members recently by adding a new mail-in option for returning the old iPhone after upgrading; customers also have the option of paying off the loan to keep the old iPhone. We detailed what the constrained supply could mean for customers using Apple’s annual upgrade plan last month as well.