Concerted Chinese Effort To Ship iPhones Back To China?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Mums, Oct 17, 2011.

  1. Mums Suspended

    Mums

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2011
    #1
    As crazy as it seems - read on...

    I decided this morning to get up at 5AM and go up to the 5th Avenue Apple Store in New York City. When I got there, there were 300 Chinese people waiting in line. I wondered if they were tourists. I asked the Apple Store employee how long the wait would be, he said at least two hours. Aside from 3 or 4 non-Chinese people at the front of the line, literally everyone in line was Chinese.

    Ok, no big deal. So I walked across Central Park to the Upper West Side Apple Store. I wasn't surprised to see another hundred Chinese people waiting in line. I got in line, was the only non-Chinese person in line. I waited an hour or two and bought a black 32 gig iPhone 4S, even though I wanted a white one.

    By that time I was guessing at what it all might mean, but had not drawn any conclusions.

    I called the Soho Apple Store and they said they had white 32 gig in stock. So I went down there, and what did I see? Check out the attached pictures - another couple hundred Chinese people waiting in line (mixed in with a few non-Chinese). This pretty much confirmed my suspicions that what I was witnessing was a concerted effort to send off-contract (basically unlocked) iPhones back to China to be sold at a profit. How much of a profit? One of the security guards at the Soho Apple Store said they could be getting 3 to 4 times the US retail sales price. -- This has got to be a first in China/US economic relations!
     

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  2. andymac2210 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2011
    #2
    Lmao I noticed the same thing on launch day, in Edinburgh - Scotland at the o2 store.
    Literally half the people in line were chinese.

    Most got turned away because they were only servicing existing o2 customers too, which was hilarious.
    I jumped up like 5 places in line after they got rid of the chinese.
     
  3. Obscurelight macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2011
    Location:
    NYC
    #3
    It's things like this that makes me embarrassed to admit I'm Chinese. :mad: however on another note. I don't think there is as much profit to be made on the iPhones since the international version is coming out so soon. They might make 100 bucks per phone if they're lucky. Also a lot might be rich tourists who are buying them so they can show off when they get back to the mainland. It's all about image and being superficial in china.
     
  4. bniu macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2010
    #4
    so true. iPhone is a device made to make your life easier, and it looks good in the process. And as someone who likes to develop an app here and there, it's an essential tool as well. It's not about having the latest and greatest, it's about having a device that meets your needs. For years, each iteration has closer and closer met my needs but this year is the first time that I'm dragging my feet on buying the newest one as the marginal improvements just aren't worth the effort of finding one at this moment...
     
  5. Mums, Oct 17, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2011

    Mums thread starter Suspended

    Mums

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2011
    #5

    Definitely don't be embarrassed. It's rather impressive. If analyzed honestly, China is and has always been the most successful civilization in the world due to whatever ideology is at the core of the culture. Egypt and ancient India are long gone, but China just keeps on going! I guess we must consider the West, along with Japan, to be the most prevailing, but it's harder to see because the West has become so culturally disparate. I personally have a great appreciation for Chinese Opera which I believe is the most exalted form of art along with the Wagnerian Ring Cycle, Tristan und Isolde, and Michelangelo.

    As far as the profit potential is concerned, my guess was the same as yours - $100. I think there might be some business man in Chinatown organizing the whole thing and paying the people to stand in line.
     
  6. daviddth macrumors 6502a

    daviddth

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2009
    Location:
    Australia
    #6
    We noted a similar thing here in Sydney. A LOT of Chinese (one Korean Girl and a Japanese Gentleman were next to us), and almost all of them were buying 2 16GB phones each, one for themselves and one for a "friend"
     
  7. dontwalkhand macrumors 601

    dontwalkhand

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2007
    Location:
    Phoenix, AZ
    #7
    A friend named eBay perhaps someone they knew for a whole couple of hours with money in china.
     
  8. Mums thread starter Suspended

    Mums

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2011
    #8
    Yeah - they were trying to buy multiple iPhones each and the main Apple employee kept having to tell everyone they could only buy two.
     
  9. Radnor macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    #9
    If Americans think the economic inequality is bad here they should spend some time in China just to see how bad it is in comparison. The rich aren't just rich - they're filthy rich.

    It would not surprise me in the least to find out that every single person there is in line buying two iPhones for the same reseller.
     
  10. Mums thread starter Suspended

    Mums

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2011
    #10
    I have spent quite a lot of time in Shenzhen and Shanghai, and I'm American. Disproportionate wealth is the most obvious trait of third world countries. Urban America is becoming third world in this respect. China, however, has a much better average quality of life for its people than India does, despite the slave labor factory system in China.
     
  11. renesandy macrumors regular

    renesandy

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2011
    Location:
    New York City
    #11
    I noticed the same thing for the iPad 2 launch. They would line up, buy an iPad 2 along with a case, pay in cash, and go back to a van. Kinda scary.
     
  12. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6

    ucfgrad93

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2007
    Location:
    Colorado
    #12
    This forum had massive threads about this same thing for the iPad2. While it is annoying for those of us who want one, I don't know why you consider it scary.
     
  13. DIABLOW macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2009
    #13
    AsiaOne
    Sunday, Oct 16, 2011
    A student in Nanjing, China has offered a man sexual favours in return for the new iPhone 4S.

    Leaked screen grabs of the QQ conversation between the girl and a man show her first offering him oral sex in exchange for the phone.

    Calling herself 'lovemelo', on the Chinese instant messaging program, she asked the man to 'Take me away, please'.

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    She told the man, "As long as you wash it clean, it's really nothing."

    The man rejected the offer saying, "No, I still don't like the idea of oral sex'.

    Sensing that he was losing interest, the year two undergraduate offered sex for five consecutive nights in exchange for the Apple gadget, which costs about 4,500 Yuan (S$893) in China.

    She added that she could even spend months with him as long as he buys her 'the Apple'.

    "You can do anything you want. Or I can even spend months with you.

    "I can do anything that you want. Just as long as you get me the Apple."

    According to The New Paper, the Chinese media managed to track the girl down when the chat was leaked.

    They published her mobile number, photos and other details.

    She was forced to change her nickname three times and seemed startled at the attention from the media.

    She reportedly lamented in an online post, "What's wrong with my proposal? Others trade sex for branded luxury too.

    "Why pick on me?":D

    Chinese student offers sex for new iPhone 4S
    Click on thumbnail to view (Photos: AsiaOne)
     
  14. Mums thread starter Suspended

    Mums

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2011
    #14
    I'm not sure calling it 'scary' is that far off base. What could be considered scary about it is the consumer competition involved. What does it portend for our collective future?

    As I've said before, there are definitely positive things about China and Chinese culture. But it would be disingenuous of me to disregard the negatives. Overcrowding is definitely a negative, as is the mediocrity created in a hyper-egalitarian society like the one we are trying to create in the United States.
     
  15. BigRingIt macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2011
    #15
    they are making more than $100 per phone; more than double is more like it. I know a guy who just took back to Hong Kong 100 unlocked iphone 4s from Vancouver and sold them to a phone store and made at lease $60K profit. It's a very lucrative market. However alot of people are doing this as well, so the selling price for them is dropping.

    For example, street price for a 64gb in US$2160. And in China, you can get even more, at US$3140.

    This guy was was even buying iphones from local folks in Vancouver who had bought pre-ordered ones with intention of selling them. He basically offered them a price that would give them a $100 profit.

    Now the stores in Hong Kong are checking all the phones you sell to them to make sure they are unlocked. There were alot of stores that got ripped off with people selling them locked phones.
     
  16. richard371 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2008
    #16
    LMFAO I had a feeling once it got out that the full price phones are unlocked this would happen lol. Yea it is a bit annoying. I think it would be funny if Apple resized these phones are not supposed to be unlocked and they decide to update their database to lock them but then the Chinese are good at jail breaking so it should not be a major problem.
     
  17. Mums thread starter Suspended

    Mums

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2011
    #17
    This is calling attention to the truth that the current hegemony enjoyed by the three major US carriers is not going to work much longer. It already happened in the UK when O2 had sole rights to iPhone sales -- as soon as Apple opened it up to other carriers, prices were a race to the bottom. Now you can cut down a Tesco sim and get unlimited everything for £10/month, or go with 3 Mobile's better coverage for £25/month, which is still affordable.

    China's amazing. So ALIVE! :rolleyes:
     

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