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Unlike the rest of the world, China and Hong Kong can reserve the iPhone 5s starting today. However, just minutes after the phone became available, most models and colors sold out across the country.

At the time of writing, only the 16 GB ‘space grey’ SKU’s remain available for reservation. All other models have sold out and are “currently unavailable” according to the online store. Sina reported on the phenomenon, noting that the gold model, in particular, was in high demand…

The rate at which the 5s sold out in China does not bode well for the rest of the world, as it suggest that overall supply in general of the 5s is low. Therefore, customers in the rest of world wanting to grab an iPhone on launch day will need to set alarms to have any chance of ordering an iPhone online on September 20th. The alternative is queuing for the iPhone, but with such short supply, it will still be necessary to get in line many hours before 8am, when the iPhone officially goes on sale in Apple Stores and other retail outlets.

Meanwhile, stocks of 5c have generally held up well, lasting throughout launch weekend with supplies only now drying up. Interestingly, it seems that some preorders for the 5c have already been honoured as the first unboxing video of the device has appeared online, via HDBlog.

As shown above, the video shows the 5c being unwrapped from its casing (which is reminiscent of the packaging used for the iPod touch).

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19 Responses to “iPhone 5s stock in China sells out almost instantly, suggesting supply is low for rest of world”

  1. So when it doesn’t sell out, it means that there is no demand and Doooomed and when it does it means Apple printed only 7 of these phones?

  2. I thought the Chinese were supposed to be price sensitive?

  3. Matt Miller says:

    So Apple gets knocked for not selling out of the 5c AND for Selling OUT of the 5s, is there anything that apple can do to not be slammed in the media? Why would we “assume” that the stock is low here in America, their home turf?

  4. Do you see the MicroUSB to Lightning in the 5C Box too ? :O

    • bwulfe says:

      Not necessarily packed in boxes for all worldwide shipments. I recall that the EU now requires that all phones ship with the ability to charge via MicroUSB. Apple satisfies that requirement by including an adapter; rather than changing their built-in interface to MicroUSB. My guess is that in regions where the law requires it; the adapter will be included. For countries / regions (Such as the USA) where it is not required by law; it will not be included. I have absolutely NO inside knowledge; so this is just my best educated guess.

  5. How fast is almost instantly? How long before this screen shot was taken did the 5s actually become available for pre-order?

  6. A bit of a stupid post. China’s stock isn’t exactly going to dictate the rest of the world. If I were guessing going to a guess I would say that China probably has the least amount of stock due to it being apple’s first launch there and not knowing what sort of demand there will be. Which is probably why they offered pre-orders there in the first place.

  7. Laughing_Boy48 says:

    I hope some investors find Peter Misek and tar and feather the dude for trying to manipulate Apple’s share price with outright lies and speculation I definitely hope they ream his behind. Unfortunately, guys like him never lose their jobs despite how clueless or dishonest they are. I don’t see why any smart investor would listen to some third-rate analyst who only uses his imagination to make investment calls. It’s obvious he had no foresight to see what was possible with iPhone 5c sales and he just quickly downgraded Apple for his own biased reasons.

    The news media is constantly trying to slam Apple on sales without proof of anything. If Apple doesn’t sell out, then the iPhone is said to have very low demand. If the iPhone does sell out it is said that Apple is in trouble because it can’t meet demand due to restrained production. These people should just report the numbers and not jump to hasty conclusions. No one outside of Apple knows what Apple has in terms of inventory and so those news media people should just STFU instead of fear-mongering or rumor-mongering. When companies are selling tens of millions of products a month around the globe there is no way any outsider knows the quantity of inventory required. I’m sure any company could run into a wall on how many units can be produced in one day and that there could always be pockets in the world where demand is low for a product.

    • Oliver Stamm says:

      Very true and well written. I’d like to add that I find it ridiculous as well that these so call Analysts, state their unprofessional opinion and haven’t even seen the new phones, which seem to be awesome again. Also I believe it was a very smart move to not sell a very cheap phone. Apple is not cheap and shouldn’t be. I’m glad they did not get influenced by those dumb Wallstreet Analysts as Peter Misek & Co. Well, why should anybody listen to them in the first place…
      Apple can still do it and is on the right track. They are not looking for short term effects like Samsung impressively showed with their embarrassing smartwatch presentation a couple weeks ago. :)

  8. I have to say that I think it is utter crap that Apple presold the phone in China but not in the USA. I guess they don’t want us to buy any.

  9. Haters: sell out means supply is short, still available means demand is weak

  10. Laughing Boy has got it 110% right. Too bad the hate apple media can’t read.

  11. jpmillet says:

    Im going to be flying to the states Sunday the 23rd and coming back to my country the 26th, Am I going to be able to find and unlocked 32gb 5s or is there a way to pay for the and then pick it up at a store??

  12. Toth Medchem says:

    good.. soon iP5s will flood aussie grey market :D (at a cheaper price)

  13. Air Burt says:

    And everyone thought China was looking for cheap phones! Turns out they just want good phones!

  14. The pre-orders of the 5c and 5s haven been about the half of last years iPhone 5
    http://www.wantchinatimes.com/news-subclass-cnt.aspx?cid=1102&MainCatID=&id=20130919000106

    And there were many reports that the stock is low, at least for the 5s
    http://allthingsd.com/20130917/carrier-sources-say-iphone-5s-inventory-on-friday-to-be-grotesquely-low/

    Maybe they want to sell the obviously more profitable 5c first or they’ve problems with the supply of the fingerprint sensor.