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iPhone 4 to go on sale in 88 countries by September

Etisalat, du yet to confirm when handsets will be available in UAE

Smart phone
Image Credit: Bloomberg News
The iPhone 4 is claimed to be the 'thinnest smartphone' witha more durable and tougher-than-plastic shell.
Gulf News

Dubai: Apple has announced that authorised electronics stores in 88 countries globally will begin selling the new iPhone 4 by September but it's anyone's guess whether one of those countries will be the UAE.

"iPhone 4 will roll out worldwide to 88 countries by the end of September," Apple said in its official unveiling earlier this week.

For the foreseeable future, Apple said the new unit will be available in the US, UK, France, Germany and Japan starting on June 24.

The next round of countries to begin selling officially licensed and warrantied iPhone 4 by the end of July will be "Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland."

An ISTYLE customer representative told Gulf News that workers at the store are excited about the latest release of the iPhone but he said it's too early to say when the handheld device will be sold in Dubai.

ISTYLE is owned by Dubai-based Arab Business Machine Ltd (ABM), Apple's authorized dealer in the Middle East and also provides pre- and post-sale technical marketing support, new product support, resellers and customer education and marketing support.

"We have no idea when the iPhone will arrive. A lot of customers have already called asking when we will be selling it," said the ISTYLE representative. "It's still too soon to tell."

No comment was available from ISTYLE parent company Arabian Business Machines by press time.

Etisalat already sells the 3GS version of the iPhone and said it will be speaking with Apple as soon as possible to provide the new iPhone 4 to its customers who want to upgrade.

"We don't have any information about it. We haven't talked to Apple yet about it, they have just released it," an Etisalat spokesperson told Gulf News.

A du spokesperson said he also anticipates that the alternative telecom provider will also offer the new iPhone4 at some stage but said it is too soon to provide details.

Only weeks after launching its highly popular iPad, Apple is basking in consumer demand for its newest phone, launched on Monday from San Franciso by Apple CEO Steve Jobs.

"iPhone 4 is the biggest leap since the original iPhone," said Jobs in a statement.

"FaceTime video calling sets a new standard for mobile communication, and our new Retina display is the highest resolution display ever in a phone, with text looking like it does on a fine printed page. We have been dreaming about both of these breakthroughs for decades."

Apple said that the iPhone 4 delivers an "seven hours of talk time on 3G networks, up to 10 hours of web browsing on Wi-Fi and up to six hours on 3G, and up to 10 hours of video playback and up to 40 hours of audio playback."

A variety of new features come with the iPhone 4 Apple said including a "3.5-inch Retina display (that) has 960 x 640 pixels — four times as many pixels as the iPhone 3GS and 78 per cent of the pixels on an iPad."

Apple also claims that its new iPhone is the "thinnest smartphone — 9.3 millimetres — with an all-new design and build quality like no other mobile device. The front and back are made of aluminosilcate glass, chemically strengthened to be 30 times harder than plastic, more scratch resistant and more durable than ever."