UAE customers may be forced to pay double for iPhone 5
Apple's iPhone 5 could retail for almost double the price of its predecessor when it eventually hits UAE stores in bulk quantities, an industry insider has said.
According to Omar Kassim, founder of e-commerce site JadoPado, the current rumoured market price for a 16GB model of the iPhone 5 is Dhs4,499.
That’s nearly double the Dhs2,399 you had to hand over out for the 16GB 4S handset.
“Since we deal with wholesalers, we’ve been hearing speculative prices on a daily basis,” Kassim said.
“To be honest, I think the prices are atrociously high,” he added. But they are unlikely to deter the most passionate Apple fans, with some websites in the UAE advertising the device for a staggering Dhs25,000. However, Kassim said some retailers were hesitant to order large stocks of the new phone, fearful of being left with expensive stock.
Earlier 7DAYS reported that offers for the fancy gizmo on UAE classifieds websites ranged from Dhs4,000 to a staggering Dhs25,000.
However, Kassim said some retailers in the UAE were still hesitant to order large volumes of the new device for fear of holding on to excess stocks.
"I think the rational people will wait to buy the iPhone 5,” said Kassim.
"And there's just a small portion that will still want to run out and get it
"It's not an revolutionary product - it's more of an evolution of the previous iPhone model,” he added. "Those who already have an iPhone 4S, can afford to wait - I think most people will just wait till things settle down."
Meanwhile, orders for the iPhone 5 topped two million worldwide in their first 24 hours, more than double the amount of its predecessor over the same period.
COO for Jackys Electronics, Ashish Panjabi, said: “If you consider the reaction the time last year when the iPhone 4S was announced, the sentiment seemed similar. Most Apple fan boys and fan girls were disappointed but it still went on to break all sorts of sales records.”
Apple said last year that it sold over four million iPhone 4Ss just three days after its launch on October 14.
“For an iPhone 4 user, it is worth the upgrade,” said Panjabi.
“The quicker processor and jump in camera technology makes it worth it.”
“As more Apps start coming out to support the wider screen of the iPhone 5, several 4S users also may find a reason to upgrade,” he added.
The iPhone 5 is expected to become available in the UAE early next week.
“We are hoping to have the devices available for sale on September 24, or
earlier,” said Kassim.
The new Apple device is the first smartphone in its category to offer LTE (Long-Term Evolution) compatible with UAE networks - the latest and fastest way to transmit data, with download speeds of up to 100Mbps.
Both UAE phone companies Etisalat and du have promised since the iPhone 5 launch that they will be able to support the high-powered technology on their networks.
Arabic newspaper Al Bayan has reported claims that UAE telecom firm Etisalat plans to launch the iPhone 5 on October 21 to coincide with the Eid Al Adha. The report said the price of the device will vary across the usual three models with a 16GB phone Dhs2,399 with a contract.
Apple rose $8.50 to $699.78, a new high for the stock market's most valuable company. Analysts predict that Apple will sell 7 million to 10 million iPhone 5s by the end of September.