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iPhone 4: Apple's most successful launch ever

iPhone 4: Apple's most successful launch ever

Apple has sold 1.7 million units of its new smartphone, breaking all its previous launch figures.

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The high-end handset took three days to sell to reach the landmark, after going on sale in a blaze of publicity in just six nations last week.

Apple Chief Executive Officer Steve Jobs said: "This is the most successful product launch in Apple's history. Even so, we apologize to those customers who were turned away because we did not have enough supply."

If the iPhone 4 continues to sell well in the long term it could well hold off the threat of Android, which has been close to ousting the iPhone as the smartphone platform with which most are familiar.

Key features of the fourth iteration of Apple's smartphone include video calling, a five megapixel camera with HD video recording and a 1Ghz processor for speedy multitasking.

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