Scalpers swoop as Apple sells out of iPhone 4 in China

US high-tech giant Apple has sold out of the iPhone 4 in China less than a week after launching the trendy smartphone on the mainland, creating a flourishing market for scalpers, state media reported.

More than 200,000 iPhone 4s were snapped up within days of going on sale while waiting lists stretch to the end of October, the China Daily newspaper reported Wednesday, citing Apple's mobile operator partner China Unicom.

Apple was forced to temporarily close one of its stores in Beijing on the same day after arguments reportedly broke out between scalpers and Apple store customers frustrated at missing out on the handsets.

Earlier in the week, scalpers were scooping up several iPhone 4s at a time, suggesting Apple's restrictions of two smartphones per person were not being enforced, the China Economic Daily reported on its website Thursday.

Scalpers outside Apple's two stores in the capital were then offering the iPhone 4s to desperate customers for 300-600 yuan (45-90 dollars) more than the official price, the report said.

One scalper, who had bought six iPhone 4s, told the newspaper he was selling the 16-gigabyte version, which has wireless Internet capability, for 5,600 yuan compared with the official price of 4,999 yuan.

The 32-gigabyte smartphone sells for 5,999 yuan, Apple has said.

The phone made its debut in China on September 25, just a week after Apple officially launched the iPad in the country, with some customers queuing for several days to get their hands on the tablet computer.

Both products have been available for several months on China's grey market, which has been booming thanks to great demand for Apple goods.

The earlier version of the iPhone only officially went on sale in China in October - more than two years after its US launch.

China has at least 420 million web users and is also the world's largest mobile market with more than 800 million subscribers as of the end of June, according to official data.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebookA wonderful selection of salads, starters and mains featuring venison, grouse and other game
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Gadgets & Tech

    Recruitment Resourcer

    £18000 - £22000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Recruitment Resour...

    Account Manager (Junior)

    Negotiable: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Account Manager (Junior) Account ...

    Javascript Developer

    £40000 - £60000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: My client, a...

    Lead IOs Andriod Developer

    £80000 - £90000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: Lead Applic...

    Day In a Page

    A new Russian revolution: Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc

    A new Russian revolution

    Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
    Eugene de Kock: Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

    Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

    The debate rages in South Africa over whether Eugene de Kock should ever be released from jail
    Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?

    Standing my ground

    If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
    Commonwealth Games 2014: Dai Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

    Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

    Welsh hurdler was World, European and Commonwealth champion, but then the injuries crept in
    Israel-Gaza conflict: Secret report helps Israelis to hide facts

    Patrick Cockburn: Secret report helps Israel to hide facts

    The slickness of Israel's spokesmen is rooted in directions set down by pollster Frank Luntz
    The man who dared to go on holiday

    The man who dared to go on holiday

    New York's mayor has taken a vacation - in a nation that has still to enforce paid leave, it caused quite a stir, reports Rupert Cornwell
    Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

    Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

    For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
    The Guest List 2014: Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks

    The Guest List 2014

    Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
    Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

    Jokes on Hollywood

    With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on
    It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

    It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

    Voted for by the British public, the artworks on Art Everywhere posters may be the only place where they can be seen
    Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

    Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

    Blanche Marvin reveals how Tennessee Williams used her name and an off-the-cuff remark to create an iconic character
    Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

    Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

    Websites offering your ebooks for nothing is only the latest disrespect the modern writer is subjected to, says DJ Taylor
    Edinburgh Fringe 2014: The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee

    Edinburgh Fringe 2014

    The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee
    Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

    Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

    The woman stepping down as chair of the Heritage Lottery Fund is worried