New iPhone sells out in less than 10 minutes after Apple starts taking orders in Hong Kong

The jet-black iPhone 7 Plus models were the first to sell out, just 5 minutes after the Apple Store began taking orders

PUBLISHED : Friday, 09 September, 2016, 4:46pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 10 September, 2016, 1:41am

All iPhone 7 Plus models in Hong Kong sold out in less than 10 minutes after pre-ordering was made available to the public at 3.08 pm on Friday, which boosted local dealers’ confidence in Apple’s latest models.

The jet-black iPhone 7 Plus models were the first to sell out at 3.13pm, and all iPhone 7 Plus models were sold out about four minutes later. At 3.21pm, the regular jet-black iPhone 7 was also sold out and customers who placed orders for the other regular models were told they would face a lengthy wait to get their new devices.

Those who managed to place an early order will get their phones in three to four weeks, according to the Apple Store. Later buyers have to wait until November.

Local dealers in secondary market are now feeling more bullish given the fervour during the pre-ordering. Lau Chi-kong, owner of G-World Mobile at Sin Tat Plaza at Mong Kok, said, “I think we can trade this early batch of iPhones for an extra HK$ 3,000 a piece.” Lau said the jet-black iPhone 7 Plus is expectedly the most sought-after model.

This was higher than the HK$2,000 premium Lau and other traders was expected the day before the pre-ordering. The marked price of an iPhone 7 Plus with a 128 gigabyte capacity costs HK$7,388.

Gary Yiu, who runs I Generation at Sin Tat Plaza, said dealers might even be able to trade for up to HK$4,000 above its retail price on the back of a small supply with a sizable demand.

Hong Kong smartphone traders ‘not impressed’ by iPhone 7 release

“There are very few iPhones in this first batch,” Yiu said. He said many dealers expected a small amount of iPhone 7 in the first batch but the result of Friday’s sale is still surprising. Apple has not yet released the number of devices sold so far.

Merchants believe that the new iPhones sell well given their established fanbase, despite receiving a lukewarm reception from tech experts. They also said the recurring exploding battery problems that the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 has been suffering from could also benefit sales of the iPhone 7.

The Samsung battery problem prompted Singapore Airlines and three Australian airlines - Qantas Airways, Jetstar Airways and Virgin Australia- banned passengers from using or charging the phones during flights.

The US Federal Aviation Administration also “strongly advises” passengers not to turn on or charge their Samsung Galaxy Note 7 during flights or stow them in checked baggage.

In Hong Kong, local airlines have yet to respond if they will follow their peers as the industry watchdog Civil Aviation Department (CAD) allows them to make their own decisions. The CAD, which informed Hong Kong airlines of the US Federal Aviation Administration’s advice, said it would closely monitor the development of the matter.

Meanwhile, Apple Store is going to open an outlet in Kwun Tong, its 6th outlet in Hong Kong.

Additional reporting by Alice Woodhouse.