Coles has grossly underestimated the demand for $259 refurbished iPhones, with stores across the country sold out of the popular devices.

Announced just six weeks ago, the supermarket chain lent its credibility to the second-hand phone market by agreeing to stock the devices, which came with a $10, 7-day Boost SIM card.

One employee told Information Age the stores received just five iPhones each.

A Coles spokesperson said the refurbished phones had proved very popular with customers.

“Demand for refurbished iPhones sold at Coles was greater than anticipated and stock sold out fast,” she said.

“In the lead up to Christmas a small amount of iPhone 7 32GB and 128GB models will be available in NSW stores only from [next] Wednesday,” adding that it was strictly while stocks lasted and no rainchecks would be available.

The phones can only be bought in person and cannot be ordered through Coles online shopping.

With school kids demanding iPhones for Christmas – and parents wanting to spend closer to $300 than the $800+ new iPhones normally command – this new round of refurbished iPhones is expected to sell just as quickly.

On the upside, Coles says it is working towards a new iPhone offer for early 2021.

“To help us continue to meet customer demand, we are working with our supply base and will be launching an iPhone 8 offer in January.”

Coles said more information would be published on its website in the new year.