Apple Store Pelted with Eggs – The Real Question is…

I WANT MY MTV! It is getting crazy out there. Now the masses are protesting about not being able to get a luxery item. Sure, I can’t live without my iPhone either, but hurling eggs is going too far…

The real question I want to know is why are people carrying eggs around with them anyway? Is this a typical Chinese custom for product launches? Weird to say the least.

I suppose that being an Apple shareholder, we should be happy that there is such hysteria over the product in the most populated country in the world.

Jan. 13 (Bloomberg) — Apple Inc., whose skill at hyping new products has helped make it the world‘s most valuable technology company, became a victim of its own success with a botched introduction of its iPhone 4S in China.

Would-be customers who had endured a wait overnight as temperatures dropped to below minus 9 degrees Celsius reacted with fury after the company‘s main store in Beijing failed to open.

Apple had advertised that the store would open at 7 a.m. At about 7:15 a.m., people began chanting “Open the door!” and “Liars!” after a man with a bullhorn said the phone would not go on sale today, without giving an explanation. Police cordoned off the store after it was pelted with eggs from the crowd.

Elsewhere in the capital, the introduction went more smoothly. At Apple‘s store in the Xidan neighborhood, the company handed out 1,000 tickets good for the purchase of a maximum two iPhone 4S handsets. In Shanghai, a store in the Pudong district opened an hour early to accommodate the waiting crowds.

Carolyn Wu, a Beijing-based Apple spokeswoman, didn‘t immediately respond to telephone calls and e-mails.

At the main store in Beijing, security guards who tried to stop the egg throwing were chased away by the crowds.

Apple sold 5.6 million iPhones in China in the first nine months of last year, giving it a 10.4 percent share of China‘s smartphone market in the third quarter, according to research company Gartner Inc. Apple‘s Wu earlier declined to comment on the outlook for iPhone 4S sales in China.

Online Sales

China Unicom (Hong Kong) Ltd., the nation‘s second-largest carrier, is the only one of the country‘s three service providers offering the iPhone with a service contract. The company sent a text message to subscribers trumpeting free home delivery of the new handset through its online store.

“Buy the iPhone 4S without lining up!” China Unicom said in a text sent to subscribers in Beijing. Unicom‘s online shop made the device available at midnight, the text said.

The site lists the 16-gigabyte model for 5,880 yuan ($930), with different levels of subsidies. The handset is free to users committing to a three-year plan for 286 yuan a month or a two- year plan costing 386 yuan a month, the website said.