Apple may sell iPhone 15 in Vietnam next month

By Tuan Hung   August 20, 2023 | 03:00 pm PT
Apple may sell iPhone 15 in Vietnam next month
A women uses an iPhone mobile device as she passes a lighted Apple logo at the Apple store at Grand Central Terminal in New York City, U.S., April 14, 2023. Photo by Reuters
Apple may sell its new iPhone 15 in Vietnam in September, a month earlier than last year as the company considers adjusting the country’s “priority level” from 3 to 2.

According to a local electronics retail chain, Apple is considering adjusting the priority level of the Vietnamese market from three to two.

Priority level two means Vietnam retailers could be authorized to sell the new iPhone 15 in its second phase of release.

Last year, iPhone 14 was launched on Sep. 7 and sold from September 16 in markets with Apple Store shops. The second phase started on September 23 in 20 countries and territories. The product was officially distributed in Vietnam from October 14, the release’s third phase.

"The final decision has not been made, but it is a remarkable signal that Apple is more interested in Vietnam and iPhone 15 may be sold a few weeks earlier than previous years," said the chain's manager.

According to Bloomberg, the launch date of the iPhone 15 is likely to be announced on Sep. 13 and the new model will be on sale from Sep. 22. These timelines are about one week later than the iPhone 14’s schedule last year, but the sale to second-tier priority markets could still be as early as September.

Some electronics retail chains said that although Apple wants to raise the Vietnamese market’s priority level, thin iPhone 15 supplies could push the release of the model past its expected date in early October.

Vietnam does not have an Apple Store like neighboring countries Singapore and Thailand. However, in recent years, the growth of the iPhone’s presence in Vietnam has been significantly faster than in some international markets.

Vietnam was the sixth country in Southeast Asia to open an Apple Store Online in May, and just two months later became the third country in the region to have Apple Pay.

According to analysts, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia and India are becoming more important to Apple as growth in other key regions is slowing.

"Apple is further consolidating its presence in emerging markets," Chiew Le Xuan, an analyst at Singapore-based technology market analyst firm Canalys, said when Apple opened its online store in Vietnam on May 18.

"In recent months, Apple has also increased their distribution and network of Apple authorized resellers (AARs) in Southeast Asia," he said.

During the coming September launch ceremony, in addition to the iPhone 15 series with four models, the Watch Series 9 and Watch Ultra 2 models are likely to be released. New operating system versions such as iOS 17 and PadOS17 will also be officially released.

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