Apple Inc has been grabbing the headlines for the last few days especially with the unprecedented success its two new smartphones, the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C, have logged. But, while Apple Inc CEO Tim Cook is laughing all the way to the bank, and so are shareholders, for Indians the experience may just have lost its sheen, except of course for the ones packing fat wallets.
While there were many who questioned the success quotient of the new iPhones, the official market roll out in US of the models on Friday dispelled all thoughts of the gadgets being anything but a success – sales figures prove it. The frenzy in the US and much of elsewhere has also driven the craze for new iPhones in India too, which also talked of the premium gadget being made available to the ‘masses’. However, the buzz, created by suitable ‘leaks’ of an ‘affordable’ iPhone 5C have now been dispelled, while 5S price is eye-popping indeed.
The price of the so-called ‘budget’ iPhone 5C and the high-end iPhone 5S have hit the roof. According to the reports both the newly launched iPhones officially will be available by Diwali in India but Delhi’s grey market is already offering the gadgets with a pricey sticker – iPhone 5S at Rs 64,000, while iPhone 5C at Rs 49,000.
In Pics: Highlights of iPhone 5S, 5C
“Both iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C are available at our store. We will be selling iPhone 5S (16GB)for Rs 64,000 and iPhone 5C for just Rs 49,000. Though iPhone 5C is only available in blue colour” ….. a leading vendor of the ‘grey market’ told media.
The ‘buy’ decision becomes even harder as the grey market does not offer any sort of warranty – an extremely risky proposition.
“We can’t offer any warranty but there is assurance that the phone will work fine”, the friendly bootlegger added.
That there is much demand in India too is clear from fact that many ‘ifreaks’ even posted ads on online shopping sites to find customers for their phones.
“I have been waiting for the new iPhone 5S for quite a long time now. As soon as I came to know that the phones will be available in India on September 24, without any second thought I posted an ad to sell my old iPhone”, says Irfan Dar, MD, Red Stone Films.
Some even have requested their kith and kin living abroad to courier the smartphone as soon as possible.
“Soon as I got the news of the market roll out of the Apple Inc.’s new handsets, I was so desperate that I called my uncle an requested him for the phone”, says Akanksha Ohja, student of biotechnology
The launch & the specs
On September 11, Apple Inc. unveiled a high-end iPhone 5S (to operate on the high-end A7 processor on iOS7 platform) with a fingerprint scanner and a cheaper, colorful plastic iPhone 5C for emerging markets like India.
As per the Apple announcement on 2 year contract, iPhone 5C will be available in five colors, with the 16GB model priced at $99 (Rs 6,262) and the 32GB version costing $199 (Rs 12,586) while iPhone 5S will cost $199 (Rs 12,586) for the 16GB version, $299 (Rs 18,910) for 32GB, and $399 (Rs 25,235) for 64GB. Protective cases will cost $29 (iPhone 5C) $39(iPhone 5S) each.
Without contract, iPhone 5C 16GB and 32GB variants are expected to be rolled out at Rs 30,000 and Rs 35,500 respectively while iPhone 5S is expected with a minimum price tag of Rs 50,000 in India.