Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Chinese Apple Store

Since just about everything Apple sells is made in China by subcontractors such as Foxconn, you would think prices would be cheaper over there. When I ordered my 30GB iPod online from Apple, it was shipped FedEx to me from Shanghai.

Apple Store US

Apple Store China

No iPad or iPhone4 on the Chinese website yet.

Comparing prices, most items are more expensive in China. I'm not sure why that is. Local taxes on vendors? Inefficient distribution channels?

16GB iPod nano (I just bought one from Costco for $150)
Apple Store US = $179 or RMB 1,210 (6.8143 exchange rate)
Apple Store China = RMB 1,448 (~20% markup)

New Mac mini
Apple Store US = $699 or RMB 4,763
Apple Store China = 5,688 (~20% markup)

Quad-core iMac
Apple Store US = $1,9999 or RMB 13,622
Apple Store China = RMB 15,998 (17.4% markup)

I don't get it. I know that in Japan, most stuff goes through multiple layers of distribution so Sony electronics sold at stores right outside the Japanese factory (back when they still made stuff in Japan) is more expensive than in the US. However, I'm comparing Apple online stores so the "other" costs should be similar.

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