The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus will hit store shelves in 10 countries around the world come September 19. Notably, and surprisingly, China won't be one of them.
According to a recent piece in the New York Times, Apple's new iPhone models for some reason haven't yet received regulatory approval from Chinese authorities. Apple has since informed its carrier partners there that the new iPhone launch will be delayed until proper approval is granted.
Apple's staff in China appeared to have been caught off-guard by the last-minute change of plans, with one executive saying on Wednesday that all of the company's stores in Beijing and Shanghai had been preparing for sales to begin on Sept. 19. The executive spoke on the condition of anonymity.
The delayed launch of new iPhone models will undoubtedly cause a fair amount of frustration amongst both carriers and consumers, especially given that some carriers had already been gearing up new sales promotions and advertising campaigns.
From Apple's perspective, the delayed launch has the potential to have a huge impact on the company's bottom line. China represents Apple's fastest growing market and the revenue derived from China-based iPhone sales is substantial. One has to imagine that the powers that be at Apple will be doing all they can to quickly skirt around what is now a minor hurdle.