iPhone 4S pre-order frenzy: 1 million in 24 hours

It won't the last time that the conventional wisdom turned out to be embarrassingly wrong.

When last we checked in with the geniuses who make up tech's chattering class, Apple's iPhone 4S was destined to be:

A) Underwhelming

B) Forgettable

C) Choices A and B combined and let's call it a dud for good measure

So it is that the pundits are scrambling to make sense of the surprise news out of Apple this morning that pre-orders of the Phone 4S have topped one million in a single day. That crushes the previous single-day iPhone record of 600,000 held by its predecessor, the iPhone 4.

"We are blown away with the incredible customer response to iPhone 4S," Phil Schiller, Apple's vp of worldwide product marketing said in a statement. "The first day pre-orders for iPhone 4S have been the most for any new product that Apple has ever launched and we are thrilled that customers love iPhone 4S as much as we do."

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If this keeps up, the "disappointing" 4S may become the fastest-selling iPhone in Apple history. And this, after sundry pundits and scribes greeted the product's debut last week with a barely disguised yawn. (Not to mention a 5 percent drop in the stock price once the news hit.) How to explain the dissonance? Larry Dignan at ZDNet has a good take here, as does James Kendrick here.

The fact is that it would have been nigh impossible for Apple to meet the advance hype - and this was the summer of iPhone 5 hype - which focused on a new exterior design for the iPhone and a host of too-good-to-be-true improvements on the inside. Some the more frenzied rumors spoke of two new iPhones, including an iPhone 5 that would be chockablock with improvements, such as an edge-to-edge display and near-field communication.

It wasn't to be. But a look inside the unit underscores that the 4S is far more than simply another "spec bump." Among the improvements: the addition of iOS 5, a much-needed hardware boost, universal carrier support making it a true world phone, longer battery life and impressive built-in voice control in the form of Siri", the intelligent assistant that lets 4S owners make things happen simply by asking their phone to do something. (Zack Whittaker has more about that here. In fact, the collective hardware and software upgrades are convincing consumers to look past the headlines. Yet again.

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