Those in Hong Kong, Japan, Australia and New Zealand were the first in the Asia-Pacific market to buy the new-generation iPhone 3G. Singapore could be in the next wave.
Loyal iPhone fans have either gone to Hong Kong or asked friends going there to buy the phone for them.
In Hong Kong, the highly anticipated touch-screen device will cost Singaporeans about $1,600. This is the no-contract price.
Hong Kong buyers who sign up for the cheapest monthly plan of HK$188 (S$33) pay HK$2,938 for the handset. Key reasons for the much coveted gizmo’s high price are its limited stocks and Hong Kong retailers wanting to attach a premium to it.
Die-hard fan Paddy Tan, 33, who went to Hong Kong to buy the phone, had fretted that it would not work here. But he made a successful call after he inserted his M1 SIM card in it.
This is because there is no need to ‘hack’ this new version, unlike the first-generation iPhone which was configured for exclusive deals with telcos like AT&T in the United States.
But consumers should be aware that the iPhone 3G sold in other countries like Japan may be ‘locked’ and will not work with Singapore SIM cards.
There are an estimated 60,000 users of the first-generation iPhone here.
Since SingTel opened its priority list for people wanting to buy the iPhone 3G, tens of thousands have signed up.
The phone’s sleek and slender design, plus its ease of use, makes it a must-have for fans. It also has a large screen.
Since the first version’s initial appearance in June last year, over six million have been sold globally. Mr Tan, a software developer, had planned to buy 50 units of the iPhone 3G for friends and relatives. But the price put him off and he bought only two for himself.
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