Have you pre-ordered the new Galaxy S3 in the silky-looking pebble blue colour? Bad news, chum -- it looks like the UK is going to be extremely short on supplies of this particular model when the phone goes on sale this week.
I spoke to a trusted telecoms industry insider who confirmed to me that the blue model is suffering from severe manufacturing problems, resulting in considerably fewer being available at launch day. In fact, the insider indicated that less than five per cent of the total stock arriving for sale will be blue.
The reasons for the delay are due to colour issues in the manufacturing process, SlashGear reports, with Samsung apparently having to throw away over 600,000 back cases. If this sounds at all familiar, it's because Apple had very similar colour issues when it first tried to launch the white iPhone 4. It took months of delays before we finally saw the phone on sale.
The difference here is that Apple hadn't been promising the white phone from launch and crucially, hadn't been taking pre-orders for it. Given the high-profile nature of the S3's launch and the vast amount of pre-orders it's had already, Samsung is likely going to have something of a challenge on its hands to appease those who've put their money down already -- and as we've seen from the Galaxy S2's Ice Cream Sandwich delays, Samsung fans can get pretty angry.
What does that mean if you have pre-ordered the blue model? Well, neither my insider contact nor Samsung has been able to state firmly what will happen, but it's likely that the limited number of blue phones will be offered on a first-come, first-served basis. If you excitedly put your money down as soon as the pre-orders opened, you might just be in with the chance of having one in your hand by the weekend.
If not, it's possible that you'll be stuck with a 'delayed' sticker, and an apology if you're lucky. If the delays continue, Samsung might offer white models (which haven't suffered the same issues) to customers instead.
I've reached out to Samsung, asking the company to clarify exactly what the stock situation means for UK customers and I'll be sure to let you know as soon as I hear back. As we saw with the ICS updates though, Samsung doesn't seem too keen to openly discuss any troubles it's having, so I'm not getting my hopes up for a full and frank statement.
Have you pre-ordered the Galaxy S3 in blue? Would you be happy to take a white one instead or will you stick to your guns and demand your blue model? Let me know in the comments below or over on our Facebook page.