Appleâ€™s share price opened 3% down this morning on news that the iPhone 5 has had a pretty muted reception in China, where the device went on sale today.
Unlike the release of the iPhone 4s, no long lines of customers were seen queuing outside Apple’s seven retail stores in Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen.
Sina.com notes although the iPhone 5 could still become a popular product, Chinese consumers’ fever for the latest model has cooled as it offers few exciting upgrades from the earlier model.
"The iPhone 5 boosts no big innovations and is not very different from the iPhone 4s," said a woman surnamed Lou at an Apple store in Beijing’s Xidan shopping street. "I might wait for the next model."
Another woman surnamed Ye told Xinhua that she hopes Apple can come up with new models with major upgrades.
"The iPhone 5 is undeniably a good product. However, among the high-end smartphone category, it has a smaller screen and few bright spots, but has a high price," said Wang Yanhui, secretary general of the China Mobile Phone Alliance.
Multiple factors have worked against the iPhone 5 in China, including multiple competitors with bigger screens, faster network access and deals with China Mobile, the largest carrier in the world.
Appleâ€™s share price recently took a knock after Nokia was able to make a deal with China Mobile for the Nokia Lumia 920T, while Apple was unable to for the iPhone 5. Currently Apple has lost nearly $200 billion in share holder value since their summer high, and appears to be handing back all the meteoric increases in their share price they gained this year so far.
Apple’s stock price will not get an effective boost unless it shows signs of unveiling products with major innovations, said Wang.
Money seems to be flowing from Apple to Nokiaâ€™s whoâ€™s shares are up 2.66% this morning and nearly 140% from their summer low of $1.63.