Apple Watch could be available in UAE from 25 April: retailers
Electronics outlets believe grey market still in play for premium goods
UAE retailers have said that they expect the Apple Watch to unofficially land in the region on the 25 April on the grey market.
ITP.net asked Apple for confirmation of a release date and price for Apple Watch in the region but was told to refer to global comment, so with no official date and no idea of what consumers can expect to pay, retailers believe that there is a demand for what JadoPado's CEO refers to as "alternative sourcing".
Nadeem Khanzadah, Head - OmniChannel Retail, Jumbo Group said: "UAE customers are not just fashion savvy and tech savvy; they're the ‘I want it now' kind of customers. With this combination, it's certain that the grey market will continue to thrive from a demand perspective."
Talking to ITP.net about how much consumers can expect to pay on the grey market, Omar Kassim, Chief Executive Officer, JadoPado said: "My gut feeling is between $349 and $500 [AED 1,280 and AED 1,830], so about a $150 [AED 550] premium.
"I'd say it'll be similar across the range, if not a bit higher if some models are bit harder to come by."
The Apple store is rumoured to be opening soon in the region with still no confirmed dates or location. Retailers believe that customers will not wait for this and will still turn to the grey market.
Khanzadah believes that the Apple store will mitigate "some" activity on the grey market and Kassim added: "I don't think a brick-and-mortar Apple Store will have an impact on alternatively sourced product."