iPhone 4 pre-paid sales stopped in UAE

Phones are being purchased, sold on for up to 80% more than purchase cost from networks

Tags: Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company Etisalat International - UAEGrey marketIPhone 4United Arab Emirates
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iPhone 4 pre-paid sales stopped in UAE du and Etisalat have stopped selling the iPhone 4 on their pre-paid packages as the phones are being resold on the grey market.
By  Georgina Enzer Published  January 12, 2011

Both du and Etisalat have apparently stopped selling the iPhone 4 on prepaid packages, allegedly because users are purchasing the unlocked devices and selling them at a vastly inflated rate, according to Al Ittihad newspaper.

Du was selling the iPhone 4 at AED2,100 to its customers and says that they were selling them on for up to 80% more.

"The company stopped selling the iPhone 4 to pre-paid users in order to fight the handling of such devices on the gray market, which emerged after the purchase of some of these devices from the branches.  du offered the phone to prepaid users for not more than AED2100, and it was sold in foreign markets at prices increasing by about 50% to 80%," Farid Faraidooni, chief commercial officer, du told the newspaper.

Faraidooni said that du was able to detect that most of the phones it sold to pre-paid users, were not being used on its network.

The iPhone 4 is now only showing availability to post-paid customers on the du website.

Etisalat has also stopped selling the iPhone 4 to pre-paid users, but it says it is primarily because it does not have enough stock to sell to its postpaid subscribers, so it has temporarily halted sales.

"We stopped our sales of iPhone 4 to pre-paid users because we do not have enough stock to address the demand of post-paid subscribers," said Khalifa Al Shamsi of Etisalat..

Al Shamsi also mentioned that its iPhone 4s were being sold on, sometimes for AED1,000 more than the original price.

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