Nov 4, 2017
TOKYO - Apple Inc's long-awaited iPhone X made its global debut on Friday, with customers lining up at stores to get their hands on the company's new flagship handset.
About 550 people were waiting in line for the Apple store in Tokyo's Omotesando district to open at 8:00 a.m.
"I came here because the iPhone got fully redesigned, which had not happened to iPhone models for a while," said a college student from Kanagawa Prefecture standing at the start of the line.
Using an organic electroluminescent screen for the first time, the iPhone X, pronounced as iPhone 10, is equipped with a 5.8-inch OLED screen.
The luxury model's radically redesigned features include wireless charging and unlocking via facial recognition software, while the home button has been removed. In Japan, the iPhone X starts at 112,800 yen ($990).
Apple rolled out the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus in September. But sales of the two models remain slow as many customers were awaiting the release of the iPhone X.
With the iPhone X, the company aims to gain momentum and challenge its Chinese and South Korean rivals, including South Korea's Samsung Electronics Co., in a fierce competition to capture a saturated market.
Apple said Thursday that it expects the new handset to help lift revenue in the October-December quarter 11 percent from a year earlier to $87 billion.
Global shipments of the iPhone series rose 3 percent from a year earlier to 46.7 million units in the quarter ended in September, and China sales rose for the first time in seven quarters, the company said.
In Japan, shipments of the iPhone X will not be able to keep up with demand until late in the year, with shipment of the product taking three to four weeks after receiving an order.
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