After a tepid initial reception, the iPhone 4S has proved itself in the only way it could – sales. Apple today announced it has sold over 4 million of its new iPhone 4S, just three days after its launch on Oct. 14.
“iPhone 4S is off to a great start with more than four million sold in its first weekend—the most ever for a phone and more than double the iPhone 4 launch during its first three days,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of worldwide product marketing, in a statement.
In addition to record sales of the new device, Apple said that more than 25 million customers have downloaded iOS 5, the company’s new mobile operating system, and 20 million customers have signed up for iCloud in the first five days of its release.
The iPhone 4S is available in the U.S., Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Japan and the U.K. and will be available in 22 more countries on Oct. 28 and more than 70 countries by the end of the year.
Tech analyst Jeff Kagan says that while the carriers are undoubtedly happy about record sales, Apple is the true winner. “Carriers like AT&T Mobility, Verizon Wireless and Sprint Nextel have ponied up billions of dollars to be in the iPhone game,” Kagan said in research notes. “All that dough goes straight to Apple’s bank account.”
Aside from Apple’s success, Kagan says the next marker to watch is which carrier sells the most iPhones. “This is the first iPhone introduction where AT&T is not the only carrier. This time AT&T, Verizon and Sprint will be competing… This will be a true test of the power of each network and their brand,” he wrote.
Kagan said that while he doesn’t think AT&T will see a significant drop in sales due to the competition, added carriers changes the landscape forever. “AT&T service may have improved during the last several months, since Verizon started selling the iPhone. Now with Sprint also in the mix it takes more pressure off AT&T performance,” Kagan said.
The news of the iPhone 4S sales comes just a day prior to Apple’s fourth-quarter earnings call, which will take place tomorrow, Oct. 18, at 2 p.m. Pacific time. As of this writing, Apple shares were up a point to $422 in early morning trading.