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Apple hikes Japan price of iPhone by nearly a fifth

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TOKYO, July 1 (Reuters) - Apple Inc has hiked by nearly a fifth the cost of its flagship iPhone phone in Japan, which is battling a weakening yen currency and rising inflation.

The Cupertino, California-based manufacturer's entry level iPhone 13 now costs 117,800 yen ($870), Apple's website showed, compared to 99,800 yen previously.

With the dollar up 18% against the yen year-to-date, the higher cost of the iPhone, which dominates Japan's smartphone market, comes as consumers' wallets are being squeezed by price hikes for daily necessities.

Such widespread hikes are a change for most Japanese following years of stable prices for many products.

Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment. ($1=135.6900 yen) (Reporting by Sam Nussey; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)