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Apple’s physical release of its new iPhone 8 on Friday kicked off with less fanfare than new models in previous years in the USA, Asia, Australia and Britain, as fans appeared to be holding out for the premium iPhone X, due out in early November.

In San Francisco’s Union Square, 80km from Apple’s Cupertino headquarters, just 80 people were lined up at the company’s flagship store, a sharp contrast to years past when lines stretched for blocks when new products were released.

Likewise in Australia, where hundreds of people usually gather at Apple’s Sydney city store for days or weeks ahead of a new model release, with queues winding down George Street in the CBD. But on Friday there were fewer than 30 people lining up before the store opened.

Apple’s flagship store in London’s Regent Street also experienced a slim turnout.

Shares of the company were down 1.3 per cent to US$151.89 in Friday afternoon trading. The stock has lost 6.3 percent since closing at $161.50 on September 11, a day before the new products were announced.

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