Questioning iPhone 5 UAE midnight launch

The Apple iPhone 5 has been a sales sensation since it was released in many regions back in September and we recently told how it was coming to many more countries very soon. One of the regions just about to see a release is the UAE where it will launch at midnight although there is some question about precisely what date according to various sources. We are most inclined to go with the date that Apple originally said though, December 14, meaning that some stores may be open late on December 13 but read on to see why we’re confused!

At the beginning of the month we heard that the release of the iPhone 5 would spread to more than 50 new regions worldwide during December and the date that Apple gave for the United Arab Emirates release was December 14th. There are likely to be a huge amount of potential customers in the UAE, eager to get their hands on the iPhone 5, but depending on different news articles it’s rather confusing as to what date to believe when it comes to the midnight launch.

For example GulfNews reports that pre-orders will be available through Etisalat from Sunday December 9, and that the telco will offer all three models, 16, 32 and 64GBs, with both value-packed prepaid and also postpaid options. It’s also reported that Etisalat’s Chief Marketing Officer Khalid Al Khouly confirmed that the iPhone 5 would be available from December 13. Bearing in mind Apple’s stated release date we imagined this meant that some Etisalat stores would open late on December 13, ready to sell the phone at midnight for the 14th.

By comparison ArabianBusiness states that Etisalat will launch the iPhone 5 at midnight on December 13 and then goes on to say that thirteen Etisalat Business Centres will open at 11pm on December 12 with sales of the iPhone 5 starting at midnight. It then goes on to say that the official release for the UAE, Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar and Saudi Arabia is on December 14.

Meanwhile AME also reports that thirteen UAE Etisalat Business Centres will open at 11pm on December 12 with sales beginning at midnight so to be frank it’s rather uncertain exactly what date the phone will be available to purchase in-store, although it should certainly be available from December 14. Etisalat prices for the iPhone 5 are AED2749, 3149 and 3549 for the 16, 32 and 64GB models respectively. Prepaid packages will start from AED99 while postpaid packages start from AED225.

Du will also carry the iPhone 5 priced at AED3199 for the 32GB model and AED3599 for the 64GB version. The telco hasn’t yet announced package prices. As a brief reminder of what you’ll get for your money the iPhone 5 has a 1.2GHz A6 dual-core processor, 4-inch Retina display with resolution of 1136 x 640 and 326ppi and also 1GB of RAM. There’s also an 8-megapixel iSight rear camera with 1080p video capture, 1.2-megapixel front-facing camera with HD FaceTime and 720p video, 1440 mAh battery and it runs on iOS 6.

Are you hoping to get your hands on the iPhone 5 in the UAE when it finally releases in just a few more days? Let us know with your comments.

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