US telecom giant AT&T Inc on Friday said it has seen an unprecedented demand for Apple Inc’s updated iPhone, with more than 200,000 pre-orders of the latest Apple gadget in the first 12 hours alone.
The iPhone 4S, unveiled on Tuesday on the eve of the death of legendary Apple founder and leader Steve Jobs, goes on wide release on Friday in the US and six other countries, but customers seeking to reserve the new device could start pre-orders a week early.
Two other US carriers — Verizon Wireless and Sprint Nextel Corp — also released the iPhone for pre-order, but did not post sales figures on Friday.
The device has disappointed some analysts because of its similarity with the earlier iPhone 4, released last year, but the processor is said to be as powerful as the Apple iPad and comes with a sophisticated voice command system, called Siri.
In addition to its standalone appeal, as latest incarnation of the revolutionary device, sales of the iPhone 4S are also expected to benefit from the enormous outpouring of sympathy for Jobs, who died on Wednesday at age 56, after years battling pancreatic cancer.
In the US, iPhone 4S prices will start at US$199 for a 16 gigabyte model and top out at US$399 for a model with 64GB of memory.
Meanwhile, the launch of a hot new Google Inc smartphone was delayed on Friday as the world mourned the loss of Jobs.
Samsung Electronic Co and Google on Friday postponed a “Mobile Unpacked” press event planned for next week at an international wireless telecommunications industry conference in California.
“Under the current circumstances, both parties have agreed that this is not the appropriate time for the announcement of a new product,” Samsung said in a statement at its official blog.
“We will announce a new date and venue in due course,” the South Korean consumer electronics titan promised.
Samsung was expected to unveil a Galaxy Nexus smartphone powered by a yet-to-be released version of Google-backed Android software and designed to challenge market-leading iPhone.
Postponing the launch was seen as a temporary truce of sorts in honor of Jobs.
Separately, a private funeral was held on Friday for Jobs, according to an unconfirmed report in the Wall Street Journal. An intensely private man in life, his family was bidding farewell to Jobs in an intimate gathering at an undisclosed location, the Journal reported.
Apple security and local police have discretely ringed the house, clearing the way for dark vehicles bearing flowers or friends to get through the barricaded intersection and into a driveway of the corner property.
Apple is planning a celebration of “Steve’s extraordinary life” for employees, but has indicated no plans for a public memorial.
Softbank Group Corp plans to keep a stake in the chip designer Arm Ltd, even if it sells a partial interest to Nvidia Corp, the Nikkei reported. The companies are negotiating terms, the newspaper reported, citing sources. Softbank might take a stake in Nvidia after it buys Arm, the report said. Nvidia and Arm might also merge through a share swap, and Softbank would become a major shareholder in the combined company, it said. The two parties aim to reach a deal in the next few weeks, the sources said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. Nvidia is the
END TO SPECULATION: The hotel’s management contract has been extended, despite reports that it wanted to end its alliance with Hyatt Hotels over a deal with Riant Capital Singapore-based Hong Leong Hotel Development Ltd (豐隆大飯店股份) yesterday said it has extended a management contract to ensure the continued presence of the Grand Hyatt brand in Taipei, ending rumors that the two sides were parting ways. “We are pleased Hyatt is able to come to terms on the extension of the management contract of Grand Hyatt Taipei,” said Kwek Leng Beng (郭令明), executive chairman of City Developments Ltd (城市發展) and Millennium & Copthorne Hotels Ltd (千禧國敦酒店). Hong Leong Hotel Development is a subsidiary of Millennium, and both fall under the Hong Leong Group (豐隆集團). The Grand Hyatt Taipei (台北君悅大飯店), owned and built by
Gold surged to a fresh record on Friday, fueled by US dollar weakness and low interest rates, while silver headed for its best month since 1979. Spot bullion is up more than 10 percent this month, as US real yields lingered near record lows. While the ferocity of rallies in gold and silver cooled in the middle of the week, most market watchers predict there might be more gains ahead. Both metals have added about 30 percent this year, with gold and silver exchange-traded funds boosting holdings to a record, as concern about the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic fuels demand for
MOVING FROM CHINA? The article did not name the company, but Foxconn, Wistron and Pegatron were among firms chosen for a production-linked incentive plan in India An Apple Inc vendor is looking at shifting six production lines to India from China, which could result in US$5 billion of iPhone exports from the South Asian nation, the Times of India reported, citing people familiar with the matter who it did not identify. The establishment of the facility would create about 55,000 jobs over about a year, the newspaper reported, not naming the Apple vendor. It would also cater to the domestic market and expand operations to include tablets and laptops, the newspaper reported. Samsung Electronics Co and Apple’s assembly partners are among 22 companies that have pledged 110 billion