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Apple sold a disappointing 5 million iPhone 5 units in three days

Apple sold a record-breaking 5 million iPhone 5 units over the past three days, the company announced today. The number tops its previous record of 4 million iPhone units sold during opening weekend, which was set last year by the iPhone 4S.

“Demand for iPhone 5 has been incredible and we are working hard to get an iPhone 5 into the hands of every customer who wants one as quickly as possible,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO, in a statement. “While we have sold out of our initial supply, stores continue to receive iPhone 5 shipments regularly and customers can continue to order online and receive an estimated delivery date. We appreciate everyone’s patience and are working hard to build enough iPhone 5s for everyone.”

Despite the self-congratulations, sales of the iPhone 5 have fell well short of lofty Wall Street estimates. Apple analyst extraordinaire Gene Munster of Piper Jaffray predicted that Apple would sell 6 million to 10 million iPhone 5 units in its opening weekend. He added that 6 million would count as a “worst-case scenario.”

Apple’s stock price had fallen more nine points, at the time of this writing, to $691.

The iPhone 5 broke the record for first-day sales, clocking in 2 million sales in 24 hours after the device became available for pre-order on September 14. The iPhone 4S set the previous record last year, with more than 1 million units sold in a single day.

The iPhone 5 is currently available in the U.S., Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, and the U.K. Apple also announced today that the handset would become available in 22 countries on Friday, September 28, and 100 countries total by the end of the year.

New features added to the iPhone 5 include a 4-inch display, 4G LTE connectivity, an improved FaceTime camera for video chat, and a thinner and lighter design.

Check out our in-depth review of the iPhone 5 here.