Fans queue as iPhone 5 goes on sale
Fans of Apple’s smartphone queued overnight to be the first to get their hands on the iPhone 5 that goes on sale today in nine countries.
But complaints about inaccurate maps and the lack of a mobile wallet feature were voiced amid the excitement.
The iPhone 5, which was unveiled on September 12th, booked more than two million online preorders within the first 24 hours and went on sale first in Australia. Ireland will get the new phone on September 28th, along with 21 other countries. The demand has already stretched Apple's capacity, with the company acknowledging that it would be October before some orders were filled.
The smartphone has a four-inch screen and is Apple’s thinnest and lightest phone yet. It also has three microphones, an 8 megapixel camera that can take panoramic views, and improved battery endurance.
It also includes a new A6 processor that Apple says runs twice as fast as the previous generation.
Apple depends on Samsung Electronics to manufacture mobile processors on its behalf, a relationship strained by the two companies' bitter legal dispute over patents.
Repair firm iFixit found the iPhone 5 uses chips from Qualcomm, Avago Technologies and Skyworks Solutions. Other companies supplying parts for the new phone include DRAM and flash memory chipmaker SK Hynix and radio-frequency chipmaker Triquint Semiconductor, according to iFixit, which stripped down one of the new devices in Melbourne.
The device included an audio chip made by Cirrus Logic. Speculation has swirled that Cirrus technology has replaced that of rival Audience.
It also had a gyroscope, used to track the phone's orientation, made by STMicroelectronics as well as controller chips from PMC-Sierra and Broadcom.
News that a supplier has been chosen - or rejected - for one of Apple's products can sometimes cause drastic swings in stock prices. Earlier this month, shares in Audience plummeted 63 per cent after it said Apple would no longer use its noise filtering technology. Shares in Cirrus spiked at the end of July after it predicted quarterly revenue would jump 70 per cent.
Apple doesn't disclose which companies make the components that go into its smartphones. Chip executives who are often happy to boast to reporters about what smartphones their components have been chosen for turn silent at the mention of Apple - for fear of losing current business or missing future opportunities with the world's most prestigious consumer electronics device maker.
Teardowns give investors a vital glimpse of which suppliers have been chosen for new Apple devices.
The iPhone 5 supports faster 4G networks thanks to a chip supplied by Qualcomm. It also comes with a number of software updates, including Apple's new in-house maps feature.
Avago makes chips that keep different kinds of radio signals - like Wi-Fi and bluetooth - from interfering with each other and its components have been found in previous iPhones.
Wireless chipmaker Skyworks and Triquint were also expected to appear in the iPhone 5.
Other semiconductors found in the phone were labelled Apple but are likely made by unnamed suppliers.
Sharp, LG Display and Japan Display are believed to supply Apple with display panels for its iPhones, although they were not identified in the teardown.
Apple has sold more than 243 million iPhones since 2007.
Additional reporting: Reuters