Remember all the fun you had standing in line to get a Wii because Nintendo couldn't put them out fast enough? Sweet, because if you want an iPhone, you're going to get to do it all over again.
On top of no pre-orders, Merrill Lynch (respectable analysts, but analysts nonetheless) is estimating that Apple will only be punching out around 200-300 thousand iPhones a month initially before speeding up to a million by the end of the year, for a total of four million shipped this year.
If you want to skip the riots, patience might pay off with ML pegging 12 million as the number for '08. Granted, that assumes that Apple would still only pump out a million a month—if demand is too insane, we imagine they can ask God to speed up his monthly deliveries to Earth.
Merrill Lynch: iPhone shipments to total four million this year [Digitimes via New Launches]
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