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iPhone sales: Did Steve Jobs's death drive record iPhone sales?

iPhone sales: Thousands are lining up outside of Apple stores in big cities around the world to get their hands on the iPhone 4S, the last iPhone unveiled during Steve Jobs's life.

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Apple fans in Sydney, Tokyo, Frankfurt and London made sure Jobs was part of the iPhone 4S launch, with flower, candle and photo shrines to the late Apple boss erected outside stores. A black-and-white picture of Jobs in Covent Garden carried the line, "Let's make a dent in the universe."

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Underscoring the enthusiasm for the new phone, Japanese mobile carrier Softbank Corp had to temporarily stop contract applications after its computer system was overwhelmed with more requests than it had expected.

Some analysts expect fourth-quarter iPhone shipments to reach 30 million or more, almost twice as many as a year ago.
Apple's fifth-generation iPhone uses chips from Qualcomm Inc, Toshiba and a host of smaller semiconductorcompanies, according to repair firm iFixit, which cracked the device open on Thursday.

The iPhone -- seen as the gold standard for smartphones -- is Apple's highest-margin product and accounts for 40 percent of its annual revenue.

Analysts point to several factors in Apple's favor: a $199 price that matches up well with rival devices; availability promised on more than 100 carriers by the end of 2011, far more than its predecessors; and glowing reviews.

Apple shares were up 2 percent at $415.56 in early trading.

(Additional reporting by Michael Perry in Sydney, Edwin Chan in Los Angeles, Isabel Reynolds in Tokyo, Marie Mawad in Paris, Jens Hack in Munich, Christoph Steitz in Frankfurt and Giles Elgood, Matt Cowan and Kate Holton in London, Liana B. Baker in New York; Editing by Mark Bendeich, Alex Richardson, Sophie Walker)

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