Apple's iPhone 13 pre-approval process has been plagued by bugs

The new pre-pre-order system is meant to make ordering the new iPhone easier. Some are just finding it more frustrating.

Would-be iPhone 13 owners have been running into a strange issue when going through the motions to pre-order Apple’s latest phone. Some users looking to receive pre-approval for the new iPhone are encountering a message stating their pre-order has “expired” when checking on their order status.

The error — which MacRumors reports has now disappeared for most users — seems to appear at random. “You can still order iPhone now. Just choose a model and select a payment option,” the error screen reads, along with a link to buy the new phone.

To be clear, pre-orders for the iPhone 13 haven’t even opened yet. That happens tomorrow, September 17, at 8 a.m. ET. This is the pre-approval process, which is meant to prepare your cart and payment method for the Friday morning rush. Instead, the pre-pre-order that’s meant to make this whole process smoother is giving customers headaches. Not the best start to a phone rollout.

Wait, should I be doing this? — If you’ve never heard of this pre-approval step before, you’re definitely not alone. The option has been available in the past, but only those using Apple’s in-house iPhone Upgrade Program have had the opportunity to use it until now.


There’s no requirement to pre-register for tomorrow’s pre-order. That said, it could make the pre-order process much easier tomorrow — you’ll basically just have to log in and click a button or two to complete the process. Any credit checks or carrier information can be loaded up right now.

If that prospect sounds enticing to you, head over to the iPhone pre-order page to get started. You can load up on accessories ahead of time, too. Just don’t be too concerned if you find the pre-approval process a little glitchy. Your pre-order should still work fine tomorrow.

And other bugs — The “your iPhone pre-order has expired” message isn’t the only problem customers have found while completing the pre-approval process. Some users have expressed frustration on Twitter for their pre-order not being approved because their carrier is “not supported.” T-Mobile users, in particular, seem to be running into this error message; some report that T-Mobile’s customer service line hasn’t known what to do about it.

The iPhone 13, announced just days ago, has already seen its fair share of criticism across the internet for being boring. Nonetheless, the new phone will likely sell millions tomorrow in advance of its official release on September 24. If history has proven anything, it’s that many of Apple’s fans are ready to buy the company’s latest tech at the drop of a hat. Even in the face of moral crises.