Hot demand for iPhone 13 in China crashes Apple website
Published: Sep 18, 2021 03:50 AM Updated: Sep 18, 2021 11:00 AM
iphone 13 Photo:VCG

iphone 13 Photo:VCG

Apple's newly-launched iPhone 13 is proving more welcome than expected in China, with some colors of the new series selling out in less than 10 minutes on Friday, crashing the official Apple website and leaving the gadget's presales hard-to-get on major e-commerce platforms.

On Saturday morning, the official Apple website resumed operation after it crashed on Friday night as people rushed to buy the US tech giant's newest product. 

Chinese e-commerce platform showed there was no stock of iPhone 13s and iPhone 13 Pros for Beijing due to the hot demand, the Global Times found on Saturday morning. 

The iPhone 13 was also one of the hottest topics on China's twitter-like Sina Weibo on Friday evening.

"The lower price is the most appealing new feature for me," a Beijing-based customer surnamed Wang told the Global Times on Friday. Wang was once a Huawei Mate30 Pro user.

Chinese mobile operators and e-commerce platforms opened pre-order channels ahead of the official launch. Major carrier China Mobile set an ultra-low threshold to make an appointment.

According to media reports, more than 3 million people have booked an iPhone 13 series on e-commerce platform by Thursday afternoon.

Around 2 million iPhone 13 series were booked on, surpassing the pre-orders of 1.5 million iPhone 12 series on the same platform in 2020. 

A hiring manager at Foxconn told the Global Times on Friday that it the company is trying to hire more workers to assemble the phone, both at its factory in South China's Shenzhen and in Central China's Zhengzhou.

The Global Times learned in August that Foxconn's Zhengzhou factory, which manufactures half of the iPhones in the world, was facing a labor shortage of up to 200,000 workers just weeks before the new iPhone 13's launch.

In order to hire more workers, Foxconn plants are raising one-time bonuses for new candidates from around 9,800 yuan ($1,511) in July to over 10,000 yuan if they work for up to 90 days.

Local authorities have also helped out. "The government has helped us think of many ways," said Wang Xue, deputy general manager of Foxconn Zhengzhou Science and Technology Park, according to a report from the Henan Daily.

According to Wang, 100 buses were mobilized to pick up job applicants point-to-point. As of August 20, more than 20,000 job seekers have been transported to Foxconn.

Although the tight supply of certain components due to complications resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic remains Apple's primary production-related challenge, iPhone production is unlikely to be drastically affected, global market research firm TrendForce said in an email it sent to the Global Times.

Total iPhone production for 2021 is expected to reach 229.5 million units, a 15.6 percent increase year-on-year, with the iPhone 13 models accounting for about 37-39 percent of the total, the agency said.