Rush for iPhone 4 in S Korea

2010-08-18 11:25

Seoul - South Korea's KT Corp said tens of thousands of people jammed its website on Wednesday as it began to take pre-orders for Apple's iPhone 4.

KT Corp, the country's sole distributor for the gadget, said in just four hours more than 70 000 people put their names down for the popular smart phone after its online shop opened.

"Our online shop server was jammed instantly as too many clients placed orders simultaneously," said KT spokesperson Jin Byung-Kwon.

"So far, the number of orders for the iPhone 4 exceeds well beyond that of the iPhone 3GS," he said.

KT said its online shop would receive orders for a week, while shops will take orders until the new model's official launch in September.

Apple has sold more than 850 000 iPhones in South Korea since it hit the local market nine months ago.

"We didn't expect so many people to pre-order the iPhone 4 in such a short time," Jin said.

Local competitors such as Samsung Electronics and LG Electronics have been striving to compete by introducing new smart phones including the Galaxy S and Optimus series.

South Korea's mobile phone market is one of the world's most vibrant, with 45 million users in a population of 49 million. But smart phones have a relatively small share, suggesting huge growth potential.