New iPhones smash first-weekend sales record

Shares jump amid broader market sell-off | Company still coy on Watch.

Apple says its new iPhone 6s and 6s Plus sold a record 13 million units during their first three days on sale — a jump on the previous record of 10 million set by the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus around this time last year.

The company's shares [NAS:AAPL] jumped 1.5% on the news, bucking a broader market fall. And no wonder: the new models are selling for between $1199 and $1799 at a time when many premium Androids are priced at $999 or below.

Apple has delivered fast-turnaround stats. The new models were only put on sale in New Zealand (and 11 other countries including Australia, China and the US) last Friday September 25.

However, the company remains shy of revealing any sales figures for the Apple Watch, which went on sale in April. Some analysts have filled the vacuum with dire estimates. Market researcher IDC says Apple shipped (as opposed to sold) 3.6 million Watches during the second quarter, placing it second in the wearables market behind Fitbit's 4.4 million.

Apple will only say Watch sales are ahead of its (unrevealed) projections, and that it's in the early days of building a retail presence for its new gadget.

The latest iPhones are "S year" models. That is, the 6s and 6s Plus have near-identical exteriors to the 6 and 6 Plus, but new features under the bonnet.

The S year models are often seen as incremental upgrades, but they have accounted for some of Apple's biggest iPhone advances, including its first implementation of 3G, and Siri.

This, year, the hero feature is 3D Touch (see more in NBR's first-impressions piece Five things to love about the new iPhone 6s and 6s Plus, five to hate).  

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