'Gold rush' for new iPhone in China

'Gold rush' for new iPhone in China

Apple's first gold-colour iPhone sold out immediately in Hong Kong and mainland China, according to reports and online buyers desperate to snap up the new status symbol.

State-run news website sh.eastday.com reported yesterday that the gold iPhone 5s models were quickly bought up after online pre-orders began on Tuesday morning.

"The Apple reservation page went down once. In forums, many people talked about how they were begging to buy the gold model," it said, adding that by 1pm on Tuesday all three 5s colours - the others being silver and "space grey" - in every store had been reserved.

Favoured by emperors and representing wealth and luxury in Chinese culture, gold has become a badge of the country's newly wealthy.

Pre-orders for the iPhone 5s were launched at 6am on Tuesday in both Hong Kong and mainland China.

"Right after it started, the champagne-gold model was sold out," Phoenix TV - a Hong Kong-based broadcaster with most of its audience living on the mainland - said on its website.

It was not clear how many gold phones had been made available for pre-orders.

Users on Hong Kong forums who had managed to pre-order the grey or silver version of the phone were looking to trade it for a gold one.

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