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IPhone 4S Tops 1 Million, Beating First-Day Order Record


More than 1 million consumers in seven countries ordered Apple’ latest phone, the iPhone 4S, in the first day, beating the company’ previous record despite complaints from fans when the product was unveiled.

Shares of Apple [AAPL 388.81 19.01 (+5.14%) ] rose more than 5 percent to close at $388.81 Monday after it said that iPhone 4S preorders on Friday surpassed its previous one-day record of 600,000 sales for last year’ iPhone 4, which started sales in five countries.

The strong sales report was in contrast to complaints from some iPhone fans when Apple announced the phone on Tuesday. Many had hoped for a full redesign of the phone, which has new software and a faster chip but looks like the iPhone 4.

“It had everything people wanted,” said Hudson Square analyst Daniel Ernst. “The market was disappointed, but the customers looked past the headline to see the content of the device itself.”

Preorders started about a day after Apple announced the death of co-founder Steve Jobs. Analysts said last week that some consumers could buy the device to commemorate the technology industry icon.

But another analyst, Colin Gillis of BGC Partners [BGCP 6.93 0.49 (+7.61%) ] , said Apple still has a long way to go to meet Wall Street sales expectations.

“It’ not the first million,” said Gillis. “We know there’ a large, loyal base of users. They need to sell more than 20 million of these in this quarter to hit estimates.

“Apple needs to break records to hit expectations.”

In the United States, three carriers are selling the latest phone, with Sprint Nextel [S 2.22 -0.19 (-7.88%) ] joining AT&T and Verizon Wireless [VZ 36.90 0.74 (+2.05%) ] as an iPhone seller for the first time.

In Japan, Apple also added KDDI as a distributor.

AT&T [ATT 26.7204 0.0104 (+0.04%) ] said on Friday that the 4S was its most successful iPhone introduction ever. The company, which had exclusive U.S. rights to sell iPhone for more than three years, took more than 200,000 preorders for the 4S in the first 12 hours alone.

The phone will hit stores in seven countries — the United States, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Japan and the UK — on Friday. It will be available in 22 countries by the end of October, Apple said.