With all the talk about developing markets for Apple products – particularly China with the rumoured new lower-cost iPhone or the gold, sorry champagne, version of the, again, still to confirmed iPhone 5S – there is one massive market out there that hasn’t been getting quite so much attention.
But it seems as if that’s about to change. According to several reports, including this one at tuaw.com, Apple is very keen to make the ‘bear’ market a bullish one and is this week sending a crew of its top executives to Russia to revisit its selling strategy in the land of Tolstoy and troikas.
TechCrunch has noted that previously Russia has had supply problems with the iPhone and Apple has experienced challenges when dealing with Russian carriers.
The Apple executive excursion is being seen as further fuel to fire the rumour that a lower-cost iPhone is on the way. One retailer told TechCrunch, “Apple is coming to town to talk to different retailers. There is going to be a discussion about getting more active in Russia with the iPhone. I assume the discussions will include models that will be launched here.”
Currently, iPhones still attract a premium pricing level in Russia. “Through distributor Svyaznoy, the iPhone 5 is currently being sold starting at 27,990 rubles ($948) if you don’t pay on a credit plan or through a subsidised carrier contract (this is a recent discount from 29,900 rubles, which is also the price on the online Apple store). For comparison, the 16GB iPhone 5 is currently available from the Australian Apple store at $799.
With that price hike, it’s no wonder that there is interest in hitting the Russian market with the (not yet confirmed etc etc) 5C. And that range of cheerful colours should be just the thing to brighten up those long Russian winters. Just as long as Apple doesn’t release a rainbow version, of course…
by Macworld Australia staff