Apple to Begin Advanced Reservations for iPhone 5S in Mainland China and Hong Kong
While most consumers will have to wait in line to purchase an iPhone 5S on launch day, consumers in Hong Kong and mainland China can take advantage of an advance reservation system which is set to begin on September 17. The reservation scheme was first used by Apple following the iPhone 4’s launch in China in an effort to control crowds at the company’s retail stores and curb the burgeoning gray market resale industry. The system has been deployed for every major Apple product launch since including the iPhone 4S, iPad mini, and iPhone 5.
Although the system, in which customers choose their device, provide identification information and then complete the purchase in-store at a designate time isn’t new, its use for the iPhone 5S launch is noteworthy for another reason: with pre-orders for Apple’s flagship smartphone a non-starter anywhere else in the world due to suspected constraints on initial inventory, China is the only play consumers can ensure they receive a device on launch day.
Those who wish to reserve an iPhone 5S in mainland China or Hong Kong can do so via Apple’s online store beginning September 17, with pick-ups commencing at 8:00 AM local time on September 20. Apple is expected to move up to 35 million more iPhones in 2014 due to new carrier partnerships in Asia, with a significant percentage of those additional sales generated in China thanks to anticipated partnership with China Mobile. The state-owned wireless carrier is the largest in the world with more than 740 million subscribers.