Apple Suspends iPhone 4S Launch At Its China Stores After Quasi-Riot And Egg-Throwing

apple store sanlitun china

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Apple has suspended the launch of the iPhone 4S in China due to concerns about being able to handle the size of the crowd.The trouble started when Apple’s flagship store in Sanlitun, China failed to open on time. Crowds reacted by throwing eggs at the glass walls. People had been waiting in the cold, in some cases overnight.

Some fights began to break out, and a SWAT team was called in. In response to the messy situation, Apple decided to not sell the iPhone 4S at all from its official stores. Instead it made the phone available online and through third party sellers.

An Apple spokeswoman told All Things D, “The demand for iPhone 4S has been incredible, and our stores in China have already sold out. 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, iPhone will not available in our retail stores in Beijing and Shanghai for the time being. Customers can still order iPhone through the Apple Online Store, or buy at China Unicom and other authorised resellers.”

On the one hand it’s great that Apple has such strong demand for its product, but on the other hand this is a really bad fiasco. Apple should have been ready for this.