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Apple store pelted with eggs in Beijing

Last updated on: January 13, 2012 17:34 IST

Apple store pelted with eggs in Beijing

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Apple's iPhone 4S smartphone made a rough debut in the Chinese capital on Friday as mobs of customers and organised scalpers threw eggs at one of its two stores in downtown Beijing halting the sales.

A salesperson at the company's store in the Sanlitun shopping district announced today through a megaphone that the store would not open its doors, according to customer Wang Qiannan, who remained waiting outside of the store.

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Image: Apple's products are sought-after in China.
Photographs: gizmodo.com

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Apple store pelted with eggs in Beijing

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Wang said the store's staff did not explain why they were not opening, but suspects it was out of safety concerns.

At least 1,000 people who were hired by scalpers to stand in line and wait for the phone to go on sale were displeased with the decision to keep the store closed.

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Image: Many stayed up all night to buy the iPhone.
Photographs: theglobeandmail.com
Tags: Wang , Beijing

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Apple store pelted with eggs in Beijing

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A bag of broken eggs was found on the ground in front of the store and egg residue was seen on the store's glass walls.

A second Apple store located in the Xidan shopping district opened its doors shortly before 7am and sold its iPhone 4S stock within one hour, state-run news agency Xinhua reported.

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Image: modmyi.com
Photographs: modmyi.com
Tags: , Xinhua , Xidan , Beijing

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Apple store pelted with eggs in Beijing

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Apple previously announced that the iPhone 4S, the latest version of the device, would be released in China and 21 other countries on January 13.

The announcement generated such was the craze that people began hiring scalpers for 150 yuan ($24) to avoid long lines gathered from early morning.

Before 7pm on Friday, at least 200 people had gathered in a line in front of the Apple Store in Lujiazui of the Pudong New Area in Shanghai.

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Image: Reselling is a major industry in China.
Photographs: thenextweb.com

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They had registered their identity card numbers and were allowed to buy two of the new iPhones.

Many of those in line came well-prepared, with warm coats, winter hats and gloves, hot coffee, food and chairs.

About 7.30pm, some parents sent packages of food and clothes to the young guys in the line, shaking heads and whispering "too crazy to understand," media reports said.

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Image: China has the world's largest online population.
Photographs: euronewsweek.com
Tags: , Beijing

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In online communities like 58.com and Baixing.com, scalpers posted offers to buy thephones for 120 to 150 yuan.

To take the offer, people had to bring their identity cards to the scalpers.

Apple's authorized retailers, including Suning and Media Market in Beijing were also selling the new iPhone 4S. But most of the people prefer to buy them in Apple Stores, which have more inventory, industry insiders said.

People are also allowed to order the new models on the websites of China Unicom, Apple China and 360buy.com.

But many people, including many scalpers, are expected to rush and buy all the online inventory within minutes.


Image: iPhone 4S was being launched in China for the first time.
Photographs: euronewsweek.com

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