Chinese regulators ban iPhone 6 models

An Apple store in Hangzhou, China.

Zhang Peng | LightRocket | Getty Images
An Apple store in Hangzhou, China.

Intellectual property regulators in Beijing barred Apple from selling models of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus in the city, citing strong similarity to an existing Chinese phone, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Apple has the option to appeal the regulatory ruling to a higher court,WSJ said, but some stores stopped selling the phones months ago and are switching to newer models. Apple will soon end production of both of the banned iPhone 6 models, a person familiar with the production plans told the Journal.

For now, all Apple products are for sale in China, sources told CNBC.

The regulator’s decision is another speed bump for Apple in its largest market outside of the U.S., The Journal said. Struggling iPhone sales in the country were a major factor in the tech giant’s first quarterly decline in more than a decade this April.

China also shut down Apple’s iBooks and iTunes movies service in April, as regulators said the company did not have the appropriate licenses, people familiar with the matter told the Journal.

Apple was down one percent in early trading.

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