Apple fans hit grey market for iPads
Thursday 15 April 2010
Apple's decision to delay the sale of its iPad overseas may frustrate customers in Germany, France or Japan -- but it brightened the day of at least a few crafty fans closer to home.
So-called resellers, opportunists who scoop up hot products and sell them over the Web at inflated prices, have recently been charging premiums of more than $500 (£324) on sites like Craigslist or eBay for the iPad.
They could soon jack up prices even more, thanks to Apple's announcement on Wednesday that iPads will not go on sale outside the United States before late May. Until then, shoppers in Europe, Asia and the Middle East who can't wait for the touchscreen device to arrive in local stores will have little choice but to pay up over the Web.
"There is huge demand. I'm buying as many as I can," said Todd Davis, proprietor of ToddsToyz.com, a Boston-based Web retailer that ships consumer electronics around the globe.
The firm charges $100 to $150 (£65 - £100) over list price for the devices, though some retailers on eBay were asking for $1,200 (£780) or more for a high-end model that Apple sells for $699 (£454).
Davis said he had only been able to get his hands on five units before they sold out, but planned to spend Wednesday afternoon scouring Boston area Apple stores and Best Buy Co Inc outlets for more.
British online retailer PurelyGadgets.co.uk was selling tablets for £590 to £790, a hefty premium over their original price of $499 to $699 (£323 - £450). A salesman said they were almost sold out.
Apple has yet to announce overseas pricing. In the meantime, market forces will determine how much consumers pay, said Steve Baker, an analyst with market research firm NPD.
"Grey markets are the purest form of supply and demand. If you crimp the supply and demand doesn't go down, then prices will go up," he said.
In the United States, the device has proven more popular than some analysts had expected, selling 500,000 units in the week after its April 3 launch.
That caused sellouts at Best Buy and some Apple stores - the only direct sellers of the iPad - though the manufacturer has replenished supplies at some locations.
The company said it expected sales would likely continue to exceed supply over the next several weeks. For its overseas customers, it plans to announce international pricing and begin taking online orders on May 10.
Rogers Communications Inc said on Wednesday it will begin offering the iPad in Canada by the end of May.
Life & Style blogs
What marriage would look like if we actually followed the Bible
iPhone 6s photos leak shows new phone will be thicker than iPhone 6, could make cases defunct
Women really are more attracted to men who make them laugh, study finds
Worrying about your weight makes you more likely to pile on the pounds, researchers claim
What do the emojis on Snapchat mean?
Britain to take more refugees as Cameron bows to pressure after more than 250,000 back our campaign
Senior British politicians tell David Cameron: When dead children are being washed up on beaches – it's time to act
Jeremy Corbyn calls Osama bin Laden's killing a 'tragedy' - but was it taken out of context?
If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don't change Europe's attitude to refugees, what will?
If you're not already angry about the refugee crisis, here's a history lesson to remind you why you really should be
Make your voice heard: Sign The Independent's petition to welcome refugees
- 1 Refugee crisis: Sweden the only European country with a majority favourable towards non-EU immigration
- 2 'Heartbreaking' Syria orphan photo wasn't taken in Syria and not of orphan
- 3 Malnourished two-year-old found being breastfed by dog in Chile
- 4 Bob Geldof offers to take four refugee families into his home 'immediately' as he condemns humanitarian crisis as a ‘f**king disgrace'
- 5 YouTube video shows woman verbally abusing takeaway staff 'because they used green peppers'
iJobs Gadgets & Tech
£25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The IT Support Engineer is needed to ass...
£22000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A great opportunity to join a p...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: Do you get a buzz from thinking up new ideas a...