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More cash confusion for Apple customers

A close up of the new Apple iPhone 4 shown at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference, Monday, June 7, 2010, in San Francisco. (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma

June 16, 2010 6:40:19 PM PDT
Apple may have a big public relations nightmare on its hands over the new 4G iPhone. Apple ran through its inventory and its online ordering system collapsed. Now 7 On Your Side is learning cash customers may have also been given some bad information.

7 On Your Side received complaints that Apple sales reps were telling customers they can't use cash, only credit cards to pre-order the new 4G iPhone which is also called the iPhone 4.

So we checked it out and this is what we found.

"They told me that I couldn't pay cash and that I need to use a debit or credit card to do a pre-order online," Joseph Phillips said.

Phillips is an art college student who's trying not to use his credit card. But an Apple representative told him on the phone he couldn't use cash to pre-order the popular item.

Our volunteers at 7 On Your Side also called randomly and were told they could not use cash.

This is what Phillips and our callers were not told: you can use cash to order a 4G iPhone by making what's called a reservation.

The difference between a reservation and a pre-order is that when you make a reservation, you have to pick up your purchase at the store, and by pre-ordering online, the item is delivered to you.

Apple told ABC7 some customers may not have been offered the reserve option because of Tuesday's madness.

Both Apple and the iPhone's network, AT&T, ran through their supplies and immediately suspended pre-orders and reservations.

On top of that, both Apple and AT&T's online ordering systems collapsed several times. Apple issued a statement apologizing to customers for the malfunctions, saying the company and its carrier partners took pre-orders for more than 600,000 of Apple's new iPhone 4.

It was the largest number of pre-orders Apple has ever taken in a single day.

Apple told 7 On Your Side when the new iPhones finally go on sale in stores, you can use cash, debit cards or credit cards -- whichever is your fancy.

But the big question is, because of the lack of inventory, when will that happen and when will Apple resume pre-orders and reservations?


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