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Angry Scenes In Beijing Over iPhone Delay

Man Carrying Bag Of Eggs In Front Of Beijing Apple Store

Apple has suspended retail sales of its newest iPhone in China after its flagship store in Beijing was pelted with eggs.

Scuffles broke out in the trendy Sanlitun district after shoppers who had queued overnight in sub-zero weather were told the iPhone 4S would not be released as scheduled.
The restless crowd was addressed by a member of staff with a megaphone around 7am. He told them the launch was delayed and they should head home.
Frustrated shoppers began shoving each other and security officials and police were seen dragging some people away.
"Around five in the morning the crowds in the plaza broke through and the line disappeared entirely. Everyone was fighting, several people were hurt," he said.Huang Xiantong, 26, wanted to buy a new iPhone for his girlfriend. He said the plaza was already "chock full with people" when he joined the queue at 11pm.
"The police just started hitting people. They were just brawling."
The crowds dispersed by lunchtime but the store remained closed and surrounded by police.
According to the state-run news agency Xinhua, at least 1,000 people queuing outside the Sanlitun store were hired by 'scalpers' looking to buy up iPhones to resell.
The practice is common in China, with genuine Apple products sold at a profit to those who are not prepared to queue.
Police Drag Woman Away

Across the city at Apple's Xidan district store, the iPhone 4S sold briskly and peacefully with the entire stock of 2,000 gone by 9am.
Apple aficionados had eagerly awaited the 21-country release of the iPhone 4S on Friday.
Chinese consumers, who are particularly keen to be first to get their hands on the latest technology, represent Apple's fastest-growing market.
"The demand for iPhone 4S has been incredible and our stores in China have already sold out," Apple said in a statement.
"Unfortunately, we were unable to open our store at Sanlitun due to the large crowd, and to ensure the safety of our customers and employees the iPhone will not be available in our retail stores in Beijing and Shanghai for the time being."

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