Our inbox has been flooded with tips about the iPad 2 making its way to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) by Apple’s international shipping date. It’s a little surprising to us, considering they weren’t mentioned during the keynote last week. After digging around in the foreign news cycle a little bit, it became pretty obvious that many people are going to be relying on grey markets to get their iPad 2 before they ship internationally.
Stuff Middle East is reporting that the device will be available on grey markets by March 25th in the UAE, and it’s also being reported on numerous other websites that many retailers feel like they’ll be able to get their hands on the device by importing the tablets directly, instead of waiting for Apple to officially release the device in their country.
The UAE already has a pretty serious grey market in place, considering they only just received the original iPad through official channels in January of this year.
Being Canadian, I totally feel their pain. Last year, just after the original iPad shipped in the U.S., I had to track down someone to pick it up for me, and then mail it up to Canada. While there isn’t much new about the grey markets referenced above, I found it pretty interesting that demand for the iPad and iPad 2 has reached such a height that people feel the need to import the device from the U.S., without waiting for Apple to actually ship the device to their home countries.
It’s a bit of a commentary on society’s voracious appetite for Apple products, isn’t it? I’d also be curious to know if this kind of thing happens on such a large scale for other products on the market.
Have you ever imported a device from the U.S. just so you can get your hands on it before the official launch in your home country? If so, why did you do it? Let us know in the comments.
Photo Credit: Levar’s View