phones and buy an iPod.
The company recently marked the sale of its 100 millionth iPod personal music device, making it, in Apple's words, the "fastest-selling music player in history."
The iPhone's premium features, however, come at a premium price: The device costs about five times more than a conventional cell phone. The four-gigabyte model retails at 499 dollars, while the eight-gigabyte model sells for 599 dollars.
Potential buyers will also be obligated to sign up for a two-year phone contract with telecoms giant ATT.
Unlike regular cellphones that have dials and small screens, the iPhone features a larger touch-screen.
All commands, from dialing a telephone number to surfing the Internet, are done by tapping or sliding a finger on the screen.
The iPhone includes an iPod music and video player, a two-megapixel camera, and the Safari Internet browser.
Industry analysts say there is one great unknown about the launch which is whether iPhone owners, familiar with cellphone buttons, will like adapting to a touch-screen.
Analysts are divided on whether Apple's "smart" cell phone will be an industry-changing device or be too expensive to compete with other smart phones such as Research in Motion's BlackBerry, which has gained a loyal following among executives.
RIM has sold some nine million Blackberry devices.
Some analysts had projected that Apple would sell around 200,000 iPhones this weekend, which would mark a similar success to the retail launches of the Wii gaming console and Playstation 3.
The iPhone is being sold across the United States through 162 Apple stores and 1,800 ATT outlets.
Overseas consumers will have to wait a few more months to snap up one of the devices. The iPhone is due to debut in Europe in late 2007 and Asia in 2008.
The iPhone is thinner (11.6 millimeters, orPage: 1 2 3 Related medicine news :1
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