A new iPhone availability tracker now enables iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus seekers to find the device of their choice in retail stores worldwide. The site tracks real-time availability at Apple and other large retail outlets.

It seems like the most challenging aspect of upgrading or purchasing the latest version of an Apple product is finding it in stock at a local retail store. Every time Apple releases a new mobile device, the pre-orders invariably sell out, and device seekers are forced either to wait on one of the legendary lines that form at stores days before the device goes on sale, or determine which stores in their area actually carry the device they're eyeing. Due to the numerous potential spec combinations regarding color, size and carrier, it can be even more difficult to pin down the device one is seeking.

Apple has provided a reservation system to aid in this quest, but often users come up empty as everyone competes in the scramble to reserve devices for the following day. Other retailer systems are even less effective and less reliable, and phone calls to the store often result in long hold times and less-than-accurate information.

For this reason, the developers of iStocknow have come up with an ingenious breakthrough in solving this conundrum. The site keeps track of inventory available in all Apple stores worldwide, and also includes large U.S. retail chains such as Best Buy, Radio Shack, and Target, with others such as Walmart on the way. Using search criteria including color, size and carrier, the user is presented with a map featuring colored pins in each location, with red representing sold out and green conveying current availability.

Although the site map is supposed to represent real-time availability, and appears fairly accurate, we still suggest that after using the tracker, you contact the store directly to confirm that the device of your choice is still available. As we recently reported, iPhone 6 Plus demand is proving to be higher than expected, and as everyone who has tried to reserve a device on Apple's website knows, things can change in seconds!

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