When Apple’s iPhone 3GS was coming to Korea, it eventually received the nickname “next month’s phone,” because its launch was delayed so many times.
Well, here we go again with the eagerly anticipated iPhone 4. At a press conference at Apple’s California headquarters on Saturday (U.S. Time), CEO Steve Jobs disclosed the 17 countries where the iPhone 4 will be sold starting on July 30.
And contrary to promises by KT, Korea’s second-largest mobile carrier and the exclusive vendor of iPhones, Korea wasn’t on it.
KT released a short statement yesterday saying “[because] it is taking longer to prepare for regulatory approval, KT will now launch iPhone 4 in one to two months.”
Although the rumor mill was preparing the market for delays, people waiting for the iPhone 4 were disappointed.
KT’s public blog was deluged with angry posts, and online forums dedicated to smartphones denounced the delay and even gave recommendations on other smartphones that can serve as alternatives.
“I am very disappointed,” netizen “kaan200” wrote on a smartphone forum that boasts 800,000 members. “I can’t say I’m not tempted to buy Samsung Electronics’ Galaxy S. I plan to try to wait until Chuseok [the Korean Thanksgiving in September].”
While Jobs told reporters that the reason for the hiccup in Korea was “a delay in receiving government approval,” the Korea Communications Commissions said that KT hasn’t yet filed for a certificate guaranteeing that the device fits domestic technological conditions. Such a certificate is a must for all new communications devices coming to Korea.
“We have completed our internal test on the iPhone 4,” a KT official said, but that Apple wanted more time for the launch.
The delay is apparently good news for Samsung, which last month launched the Galaxy S, its latest Android-based smartphone.
Galaxy S has been selling well: 350,000 units in the three weeks since its release. Apple’s iPhone 3GS sold 800,000 units in about seven months after its release in November.
Meanwhile Jobs yesterday promised free bumpers for all iPhone 4 owners to solve an antenna problem with the hot devices.