The day that a new iPhone becomes available for pre-order is always a frantic one, but once you survive the big day all attention then turns to when your lovely new smartphone will arrive. Apple will have given you an estimate of when that will be but sometimes, only sometimes, things will happen more quickly than expected.

A number of iPhone X buyers have found that to be the case, with their orders having already been shipped from China via UPS but Apple’s system still shows them as “Preparing to Ship” or “Preparing for Shipment”.

Apple is not always the best at making sure everyone knows what is happening with a pre-order, so sometimes we have to do a little digging in order to get the full picture. If you recently pre-ordered a new iPhone X and want to check out whether an order has shipped or not – Apple’s systems will continue to say “Preparing for Shipment” until next week – then you can do exactly that by heading over to the UPS website and giving it your details to grab that tracking number early before Apple gives it to you. Here’s how.

Step 1: Pop on over to the UPS website’s Track by Reference page: ups.com/WebTracking/track.

Step 2: Feed in your phone number associated with the order on apple.com under “Shipment Reference” label, and zip/post code under “Destination ZIP/Postal Code” label. Make sure you don’t add any brackets or dashes/hyphens when entering phone number.

Step 3: See what the website comes back with. Fingers crossed, you see the package being picked up by UPS in China.

Not everyone who tries this will see an iPhone en-route, and if you don’t but were told yours will arrive on launch day, then we wouldn’t start worrying just yet. If your order is not expected to arrive until the week after November 3 though, this could be the bearer of good news the likes of which we do not often get to deliver. Good luck, folks, and happy tracking.

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