iPhone 5 Soars in Hong Kong, Creating Mass Shortages
Apple's (NASDAQ: AAPL) latest smartphone has become a hot, hard to come by commodity in Hong Kong since its release on September 21.
According to AllThingsD, retail outlets have completely sold out of the iPhone 5. SmarTone and other carriers have continued to take orders, but most buyers will not receive the device until late October or early November.
Apple is offering a so-called "store lottery" for those who cannot wait to get their hands on the newest iPhone, but with supplies running thin in Hong Kong, it is not doing much to satisfy demand.
In the United States, Apple.com still aims to ship iPhone orders in three to four weeks. The website also offers users the chance to purchase an iPhone 5 with next day pick-up at an Apple Retail Store if they order online between 10:00 p.m. and 4:00 a.m. local time, which indicates that the domestic supply issues may be coming to an end. "Quantities are limited and availability can change quickly -- an iPhone is only reserved for you when checkout is completed," the site warns.
Apple first launched the iPhone 5 in nine markets, including the United States, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and the United Kingdom. The Cupertino, California-based tech giant released the device in 22 additional markets -- including Austria, Finland, Italy, Netherlands, New Zealand, Sweden and Switzerland -- on September 28.
More than five million iPhone 5 units were sold during the weekend of September 21. Apple has not released any additional sales figures, but many analysts expect the device to break records when the company announces its full sales data for the quarter.
When the iPhone 4S was released, Apple sold 37 million units during the first quarter of availability. That record-breaking number could be a very difficult for the iPhone 5 to beat, but it is already off to a great start. While the iPhone 5 sold more than five million units during its first weekend, the iPhone 4S topped out at four million units.
The iPhone 5 was expected to be the last major product that Apple released in 2012, but recent reports suggest that the company may add the still-unconfirmed iPad Mini to its fall lineup.
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