|Chinese frown at Apple’s cheap shot, but Japanese begin lining up early
Chinese web users dismissed the so-called “low-cost'' iPhone 5C (pictured) as too expensive, raising questions over Apple's ability to build up sales in the world's biggest mobile market.
Meanwhile in Tokyo’s Ginza district, fans were lining up for the new handset, more than a week earlier. A 44-year-old Japanese businessman named Tetsuya Tamura was first in line and said he was using up his annual leave. The iPhone goes on sale in Japan on September 20.
But the new iPhone 5C will retail in China for 4,488 yuan for the 16GB version, according to Apple's China online store, making it only marginally cheaper than the previous model, the iPhone 5.
It is also well above the US$549 that an unlocked iPhone 5C will sell for in the United States.
The top-line iPhone 5S starts at 5,288 yuan in China, whereas the unlocked US equivalent is US$649.
“I thought the cheap 5C version would be priced at one thousand or two [yuan]... I can't sell my kidney for this much,'' said one poster on Sina Weibo, referring to a teenager who sold a kidney to buy an iPhone and iPad last year.
“So this is the so-called cheap version? The 5C starts at 4,488 yuan in China. Haha, they treat the Chinese as peasants,'' said another.
With a network contract in the US, the iPhone 5C can cost as little as US$99.
The new iPhone was launched globally at Apple's Silicon Valley headquarters in California on Tuesday.
Many domestically made smartphones are priced as low as US$100 in China.—AFP