While standing in line at the Apple retail store to buy your new iPad, were you approached by anyone offering you money to buy an extra one on their behalf? Did anyone try to bribe you for your place in line? If so, you are not alone.
Unsavory tactics are being used all across the world by smugglers trying to get their hands on as many iPads as possible. They are selling them in China for a considerable markup.
As Apple fans in 16 countries around the globe were queuing up to be one of the first to get the new iPad, opportunistic entrepreneurs were buying places in line or buying off others for their unused second iPad purchase (Apple retail store policy state that only two iPads can be purchased per person). The seedy business men and women are taking their newly acquired gadgets back to countries where the iPad has yet to go on sale, namely, China.
While the official reason that China was not included in the initial release date list of countries is unknown, some have speculated that it has something to do with the ongoing battle between Apple and Proview. Whatever the reason, the home to suppliers and assemblers of the iPad will not see an official iPad release anytime soon. Although the new tablet goes on sale March 23 in China’s region of Macau, Apple still has not announced a date for the rest of the country.
Money-hungry black marketers saw this as a chance to make a few bucks, and a few they did. The iPad had been selling at a markup of approximately 40 percent. Reports have been coming in that the 16GB Wi-Fi only model is selling for an average of $740, an increase of about $240.
TheDailyMail wrote about this news today and has pictures of various, nefarious buyers of massive amounts of iPads. According to them, shoppers were seen handing over brand-new iPads to a group of Eastern European men. One said, “We’re just buying and selling, we’re not doing anything illegal. We bought them and we sold them.”
While this type of behavior is unfortunate, it is not the least bit unusual. Every model of the iPad has been profit makers for those buying and selling on the black market. Or, is it the gray market. I get them confused.