Singapore, Hong Kong, and Japan will be the first Asian countries that will sell Apple's iPhone 5 when it is launched worldwide on Sep. 21.
The handset--which comes in either white and silver, or black and slate--will be available for pre-order from this Friday. Its body is about 18 percent slimmer and 20 percent lighter than the iPhone 4S--at 7.6mm thin and weighing 112g.
Local operator pricing in Asia has not yet been disclosed, but Apple will sell the device in the United States with a two-year contract: 16GB (US$199), 32GB (US$299), 64GB (US$399).
In Singapore, the iPhone 5 will be available without contract for a suggested retail price of S$948 (US$772) for the 16GB model, S$1,088 (US$886) for the 32GB model and S$1,238 (US$1,008) for the 64GB model.
It will also be available unlocked from HK$5,588 (US$720) in Hong Kong. Specific price points for Japan were not yet available.
Not complete LTE support
In terms of network support for the iPhone's 4G LTE capability, only telcos M1 and SingTel in Singapore have been listed by Apple. Though the country's third telco StarHub will also carry the handset, it will update ZDNet Asia on why it has been excluded. StarHub says its LTE network will be able to support the iPhone 5, when it rolls out partial coverage next Wednesday.
In Japan, KDDI and Softbank are the only telcos listed with networks as being able to support the device's LTE capability.
For Hong Kong, the iPhone 5 will be able to work on SmarTone's LTE network.
In its press release on Thursday, Apple revealed the handset will be rolled out to 22 more countries on Sep. 28, but no other Asian countries are listed.
On Tuesday, Samsung was reportedly gearing up to sue Apple over the iPhone 5, which it had expected to feature 4G LTE connectivity patents that it claimed to own. The South Korean market is missing from Apple's launch plans this month. There are no specific release dates yet, but KT Corporation and SK Telecom will carry the devices eventually, according to a report by Yonhap News on Thursday,