Jobs: Over 1 million new iPhones sold

In his first public statement since early this year, Apple's CEO says that more than 1 million new iPhone 3G S smartphones were sold since Friday. Meanwhile, 6 million customers have downloaded the iPhone OS 3.0.

Apple's customers have wasted no time scooping up its latest smartphone and operating system update.

More than 1 million iPhone 3G S smartphones have sold in the three days since the new model hit the stores Friday, Apple announced Monday. In addition, 6 million people have downloaded the new iPhone OS 3.0 update in the five days since its release.

iPhone 3G S Apple

The sales figure even prompted Apple CEO Steve Jobs to make his first public comment since going on medical leave early this year.

"Customers are voting and the iPhone is winning," Jobs said in a statement. "With over 50,000 applications available from Apple's revolutionary App Store, iPhone momentum is stronger than ever."

The 1 million mark outpaces the estimate of at least one analyst, Piper Jaffray's Gene Munster, who predicted that 500,000 3G S phones would sell in the first weekend. The original iPhone sold about 270,000 units over its first weekend in June 2007, while the iPhone 3G sold around 1 million when it launched in July 2008. (And while Apple sold the iPhone 3G in 21 countries in its first day last year, the 3G S was available in only eight countries at launch.)

The 3.0 update for the iPhone and iPod Touch, which hit the iTunes store on Wednesday, has also found a wide audience among users who were awaiting new features, including copy and paste, landscape mode support for more applications, and the Spotlight search tool.

Despite the strong first-weekend sales, Apple is facing new competition in a crowded smartphone market. Palm recently debuted its new Pre, though it sold somewhere between 50,000 and 100,000 units in its first two days. And Research In Motion will unveil its new BlackBerry Tour later this summer.

Apple watchers are also awaiting the return of Jobs. Recent reports say the Apple CEO received a liver transplant two months ago.

Jobs is expected to return to Apple later this month but initially may just take on a part-time role.

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