If you were hoping to order a new iPhone 5s from the Apple Online Store tomorrow and have it delivered to your door on Saturday, then you may be out of luck. The new handset just went on sale in Australia, and no matter which color or capacity you go for, every single model comes with a 7-10 business days shipping estimate.
Hot on the heels of this morning’s leak from casemaker Tactus of a new case mould for the iPad 5 (and the intriguing hint of a June 18th announcment), an entirely different Hong Kong casemaker is showing off a case mold for the iPad 5 which largely supports the previous report.
Apple celebrates the Chinese New Year by offering its fans in Asia one-day “Red Friday” deals, similar to the Black Friday sale it holds for customers in the United States. And the Cupertino company has today begun teasing the event via its online store with a big red advert that promises “great gifts for everyone on your list.”
Tim Cook has kicked off 2013 with a second visit to China. The Apple CEO met with Miao Wei, head of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, to discuss the development of China’s information technology industry, mobile communications, and Apple’s expansion in China.
The Cupertino company has doubled its number of retail outlets in the nation, and its iOS devices are becoming increasingly popular there. Cook’s last visit to China came in March 2010 before he pledged “greater investment” in the world’s largest market for consumer technology.
Apple’s been focusing their retail expansion overseas the last few years. They recently announced plans to build their first store in South America, and they’ve continued to open up new flagship stores in Asia.
Hong Kong already has two Apple Stores, but a third store is opening up in the Causeway Bay area this Saturday that is both massive and beautiful. The main feature of the Causeway Bay store is its 30-foot glass curtain wall that allows customers to see all three stories of the store while walking by on the street.
An Apple store is opening in China next week, in Wangujing Street, an outdoor pedestrian mall that has been there for over 800 years. This will the the third retails store in Beijing, China, and it’s said that it will be the largest Apple store in Asia. It will join over 200 other shops in the shopping destination center about a mile from historic Forbidden City and Tiananmen Square.
Apple is expected to sell the iPhone 5 directly in India this time around.
The iPhone 5 is expected to launch in India on October 26, more than seven weeks after making its debut in the United States. The device is also expected to come with “wider availability” than previous models, which were hard to get hold of, and should come with a similar price to the iPhone 4S when that first launched in India.
Customers queue for the iPhone 5 at IFC Mall in Hong Kong.
If you think the iPhone 5 is hard to get hold of where you live, spare a thought for those in Hong Kong, where the device is in such short supply, users must play the “Apple Store lottery” to be in with any chance of getting their hands on one. According to one analyst, locals have more chance of winning the real lottery than picking up the Cupertino company’s latest smartphone the day after they order.