If you live in Canada and haven’t pre-ordered an iPhone XS or iPhone XS Max yet, you might still be able to score one on launch day.
Apple has activated its Reserve and Pickup system in Canada, allowing customers to place an in-store pickup reservation for an iPhone XS or iPhone XS Max at an Apple Store across the country, subject to availability.
The page often says Apple is “not taking reservations to buy an iPhone right now,” but limited supplies are added each day, at which point the page becomes functional. When live, the page allows you to reserve an iPhone XS or iPhone XS Max in whichever colors and storage capacities are available at the time.
The best part is that the reservations are for Friday, September 21, the day the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max launch in stores, so if you missed out on middle-of-the-night pre-orders, this is a good second chance.
Instead of constantly refreshing the page, we recommend following Robinhood Monitor on Twitter. The account parses the backend of Apple’s reservation system and automatically tweets when an iPhone XS or iPhone XS Max in any color or storage capacity becomes available to reserve at any Apple Store in Canada.
Since inventory runs out very quickly each time an iPhone XS or iPhone XS Max reservation becomes available, the key is to enable push notifications on the Robinhood Monitor account to receive real-time alerts. As soon as more stock is added, head to Apple’s reservation page as soon as possible.
Placing a reservation allows you to pick up an iPhone XS or iPhone XS Max at an Apple Store within a designated 30-minute window. Apple recommends bringing a government-issued photo ID with you for verification.
Note that payment for the iPhone is not collected online in advance, but rather upon arrival to the Apple Store for the in-store pickup.
I used the Reserve and Pickup system to buy an iPhone X at the Eaton Centre in Toronto last year, despite not placing a pre-order, so I can vouch that it works. Another option is to simply wait until Friday, line up at an Apple Store, and make a walk-in purchase, but lines are often long and stock runs out.
Another benefit to the Reserve and Pickup system is that, at some Apple Stores, there is a dedicated queue for customers with reservations.
Unfortunately, the Reserve and Pickup system is currently only working in Canada. The page eventually went live in Australia, Hong Kong, and the United Kingdom as well last year, so it may be worth keeping an eye on those links. In the United States, the page simply says that reservations are no longer required.
iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max launch in stores this Friday, September 21, with most locations in Canada opening early at 8:00 a.m. local time.