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Apple opens iPhone 4S preorders in 22 more countries

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Apple engineered the iPhone 4S to be a “world phone,” enabling the company to manufacture one device that can be used with GSM carriers using micro-SIM cards worldwide. Now, Apple is starting to reap some of the fruit of that decision: the company will be rolling out the iPhone 4S in 22 additional countries by the end of the month, and pre-orders are now available in online stores for the new markets. Depending on the country, Apple is listing availability time for purchases from one to two weeks.

The new countries getting the iPhone 4S are Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland; Apple announced it planned to launch the iPhone 4S in those markets by the end of October when it formally introduced the device. In addition to the United States, the iPhone 4S is already on sale in Canada, Australia, France, Germany, Japan, and the United Kingdom, so the 22 new markets bring the number of countries with the iPhone 4S to 29.

The rollout represents Apple’s quickest international introduction for an iPhone, and promises to quickly buoy sales for the device. Apple moved more than four million iPhone 4S units in the device’s first three days of availability; adding significant international markets to the mix will no doubt keep Apple’s iPhone 4S sales at heady levels through the end of the year—which is probably the source of some of Apple CEO Tim Cook’s recent outright optimism about Apple’s year-end finances.

“I’m confident that we will set an all-time record for iPhone this quarter,” said Cook during Apple’s fourth-quarter conference call with analysts.