US tech giant Apple Inc. said Wednesday it will begin sales of the iPhone X smartphone in South Korea on Nov. 24 -- earlier than expected -- apparently due to the sluggish performance of the iPhone 8 here.
The release came as a surprise, as industry watchers expected the release to take place in December.
But full-fledged sales may only begin next year due to limited supplies. The price of an unlocked 64-GB iPhone X will be 1.42 million won ($1,274) here, while the 256-GB version will cost 1.63 million won.
The faster than expected release apparently came as the iPhone 8, which hit South Korean shelves this month, suffers from lackluster sales, industry watchers said.
The US tech giant is presumed to have sold 140,000 units of the iPhone 8 smartphones here in the two days after its official release Friday, with preorders amounting to just 60-70 percent of those posted by the iPhone 7.
Some of Apple fans in South Korea have been awaiting the iPhone X, which is equipped with new features such as Face ID and an organic light-emitting diode display. Global sales of the iPhone X started last week.
"It seems that Apple pushed forward the release of the iPhone X to take advantage of the supply shortage as a marketing strategy,"
an official from a local mobile carrier said. (Yonhap)