(Yicai Global) Oct. 23 -- Apple has reserved most of its initial supply of iPhone XRs for China, which signals high hopes for the market despite lackluster pre-sales on the release day Sept. 21.
The first batch of iPhone XR supply is expected to be at least three million units, of which China takes up two million handsets, tech news outlet Tencent reported today.
The country's first-day pre-sales were less than one million, showing a lack of enthusiasm from consumers. Chinese buyers preferred domestic brands amid generally slowing handset sales in September, as the state-backed China Academy of Information and Communications Technology said in a report published on Oct. 15.
Industry analysts predict that the iPhone XR, with a minimum price of CNY6,499 (USD940), will become the most popular of the latest three releases. The model is also more affordable than the iPhone XS and XS Max.
Priced at CNY12,799 (USD1,870) in China, the iPhone XS MAX 512G is so far the most costly of its smartphones sold in the country and is almost a third more expensive than the same handsets marketed in the US.
Apple's official purchase page shows that the iPhone XR would be available on the official launch day of Oct. 26 while its delivery time is now changed to "one to two weeks." Alibaba's shopping platform Tmall also says that it will be shipped in 17 days. The prolonged delivery time could be a signal of strong demand while it may also speak for hunger marketing.
Editor: Emmi Laine