Want to score an iPhone X? Here are the best preorder tips

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It’s widely expected that the iPhone X will be in very, very limited supply when Apple begins taking preorders on Oct. 27. In order to have one in your hands on launch day, well, it’s going to take a bit of luck and a lot of planning ahead.


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1. Set an alarm (or three)

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Screenshot by Jason Cipriani/CNET

Be prepared to stay up late, or wake up really early. Apple’s preorders typically start at 12:01 a.m. PT/3:01 a.m. ET. Set multiple alarms to ensure you don’t sleep through the preorder.

2. Pay your wireless bill

Make sure your wireless bill is paid up. There’s nothing more disappointing during the iPhone order process than being told you need to pay your bill before the order can go through.

3. Confirm your upgrade status

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Screenshot by Jason Cipriani/CNET

Just because you’re on a payment plan for your current smartphone doesn’t mean you’re eligible for an upgrade. Sometimes another payment toward your device needs to be paid; other times your carrier may ask for a bigger payoff before you are eligible to upgrade.

In other words, log into your account through your carrier’s website and ensure you are able to upgrade. Make any payments that will be required now, not in the early morning hours of Oct. 27.

4. Get pre-approved for the iPhone Upgrade Program

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Screenshot by Jason Cipriani/CNET

Starting October 23, members of Apple’s iPhone Upgrade Program can take all of the necessary steps to complete the upgrade process, short of actually ordering the iPhone X. According to Apple’s upgrade site, members can use the Apple Store app to prepare for the preorder between October 23 and October 26. After that, apparently, you’re on your own. 

5. Use the Apple Store app

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Screenshot by Jason Cipriani/CNET

By far the best way to order previous iPhones is through the Apple Store iOS app. The past few preorders I’ve placed have been through the app without a single issue. Most of the time the app is the first thing to come back after Apple takes the store offline.

Download the Apple Store app, then be sure to log into your Apple account.

One last thing: Go in right now and “heart” the iPhone X model you want. By doing so you can quickly pull up the exact model when it comes time to order through the Account tab.

6. Multiple tabs

Despite the ease of use and success rate of the Apple Store app, it’s always a good idea to have a backup plan. Have a computer nearby with multiple tabs open.

I typically have one tab pointed at my carrier’s website and another at the Apple Store. Using Chrome, I use this Auto Refresh extension and set it to refresh each tab every 5 seconds. Once the preorder goes live, I then quickly disable the extension.

7. Unfreeze your credit

Interacting with a carrier or Apple and taking part in one of the many iPhone upgrade programs typically requires some sort of credit check during the checkout process. And with the Equifax hack, you may have put a freeze on your credit.

With that in mind, you don’t want to miss out on launch day unit just because you forgot to remove the freeze on your credit. In fact, you can do this right now through all three credit monitoring services, schedule a temporary freeze removal, and have it go back in place on October 28. Below are direct links to each company’s respective page for doing just that:

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