Eleven months after Apple's next-generation smartphone hit stores worldwide, the iPhone 4 was launched on Friday in India, the world's second biggest market for mobile phones.
Declaring the roll-out of one of the most expected smartphones in the world by Bharti airtel in Kolkata and in 34 other cities in India, Airtel CEO (West Bengal and Orissa) P D Sharma said the iPhone 4 will create a separate space from the clutter of smartphones in the market, many of them having copied Apple features.
"iPhone 4 will stand out for its original applications and cater to the middle segment as well, with attractive pricing which will not create a pinch both in the long and short term," Sharma said on the sidelines of the launch.
Asked about the delay of almost one year in the product arriving in India after its June launch in the US, Sharma said, "With third generation (3g) mobile networks only coming of age in recent times in India, there was no other option but the iPhone 4 to wait."
"The handset will be priced at Rs 34,500 with 16-GB capacity and Rs 40,900 with 32-GB capacity, which is attractive considering the long-term use. The set is powered by Apple's A4 (operating system), boasts of a retina display, FaceTime for video chat, 5-MP rear facing camera with LED flash and HD video recording," he said.
The iPhone 4 boasts a higher-quality screen and longer battery life than the previous model, he said, adding that Bharti already sells earlier models of the iPhone in India.
"With the high number of mobile users, smartphone market will grow in the country," he said.
The iPhone 4 was launched way back in June in the US, followed by other countries.
To the question if the pricing would offset the buying of the model at inflated rates over and above the USD 1500 price tag from the grey market, Sharma said that stage seems to have been over.
The iPhone 4 was launched in the city by Tollywood actress Paoli Dam, who was among the 35 celebrities in different cities of the country gifted a handset on the occasion of the launch.
"I am happy to possess one iPhone 4 from Friday. I have also been given a favourite number by Airtel, which I can memorise very easily. I am sure this handset will become a part of my accessory," Dam said.
About whether she had been using Apple products earlier, the actress said, "I had been using Apple Mac."