The Verge reports that it took less than 30 minutes for the gold iPhone 5s to show a ship date of simply “October” from all four major wireless carriers. As of 10:30am Eastern, Apple’s site lists 7-10 business days for the silver and “space gray” options.
I checked Apple’s site at about 7am this morning and the Sprint versions were still at a 2-3 day window while AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile sat at 7-10 days, but the Sprint version has now slipped to 7-10 days as well. I ordered a silver one for my wife from Verizon right at 3am when they went on sale. I do not recommend waking up at 3am to order a phone unless it’s absolutely necessary, but the upside is that my expected ship date is Tuesday, September 24.
It would be interesting to know whether the gold version is in such short supply because Apple didn’t make as many or because it’s in high demand. Or both. We’ll almost certainly never know the real story; the Verge’s sources apparently only said that the gold iPhone 5s was in short supply for launch day.