Just one hour after pre-orders of the iPhone 5 went live at midnight on Sept. 14, Apple was forced to adjust the shipping time from one to two weeks because of the overwhelming demand for the new smartphone. At the time of reporting, the shipping time has been pushed back even further to 2-3 weeks.

Yes, the new sixth generation iPhone was selling like hotcakes, and according to reports, the iPhone 5 pre-orders sold out 20 times faster than those of the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S. While the iPhone 4S pre-orders were sold out in 22 hours, it took about 20 hours for the iPhone 4, TechCrunch reported.

Not only Apple, other iPhone 5 sellers also experienced similar dash of pre-orders and were forced to delay their respective shipping dates. While AT&T said that new orders wouldn't be shipped for 14 to 21 business days, new orders on Verizon now estimated to be shipped by Sept. 28.

The vast demand for the iPhone 5 also took Apple's shares to all-time high, raising the company's market value to $648 billion.

"I've never encountered anything that sold out this fast," the Loss Angeles Times quoted Peter Misek, an analyst at Jefferies & Co, as saying. "We said it would be the biggest product release in consumer electronics history, but I guess we even underestimated it. It's a mania."

"Preorders for iPhone 5 have been incredible," Apple spokeswoman Nat Kerris told AllThingsD. "We've been completely blown away by the customer response."

Industry analysts believe that the iPhone 5 could be the bestselling smartphone ever. They have also estimated that the Cupertino tech giant could sell as many as 10 million iPhone 5 units in the first 10 days and as many as 58 million units during the holiday quarter.

Amid the massively overwhelmed response for the iPhone 5, one thing that is there in every smartphone enthusiast's mind is the unavoidable battle that Apple's newest will have to be in against 2012's hottest phone prior to Sept. 12, the Samsung Galaxy S3.

In terms of hardware, Galaxy S3 has already proved that it is far superior to iPhone 4S. With that in mind, iPhone 5 is definitely more adroit to challenge the South Korean company's best bet.

Below is an infographic, produced by MobilePhoneFinder.com.au, that puts iPhone 5 against both Samsung Galaxy S3 and iPhone 4S to compare the central statistics of each device.

iPhone 5 vs iPhone 4S and Samsung Galaxy S3 full comparison