As yen tumbles, gadget-loving Japan goes for secondhand iPhones

Tokyo Nov 8 (Reuters) – Japanese shoppers have been eagerly targeting the latest gadgets for years, but a weakening yen has put some new iPhones out of reach, fueling second-hand sales in Apple Inc’s ( AAPL ) key market. O).

The Japanese currency fell to a 32-year low against the dollar, squeezing consumers and accelerating broader spending in the world’s No. 3 economy. Japan’s shoppers are more open to second-hand purchases thanks to the rise of online auction sites, industry watchers say.

In July, Apple raised the price of the entry-level iPhone 13 by nearly a fifth. The base iPhone 14 debuted at 20% more than the iPhone 13, despite a US price of just $799. Despite the dollar’s rise against global currencies this year, the yen has been particularly hard hit, falling 22%.

Salaryman Kaoru Nagase wants a new phone, but can’t justify the iPhone 14’s price, which starts at ¥119,800 ($814). Instead, He bought less than a third of a used iPhone SE 2 in Tokyo’s Akihabara electronics district.

“At over 100,000 yen, the iPhone 14 is too expensive and unaffordable, and the battery would be good for 10 years,” he said. The iPhone SE 2 will be released in 2020, but without the dual rear cameras of the iPhone 14. He says it’s a “good balance” of cost and features.

Also Read :  Former Employee Of Technology Company Pleads Guilty To Stealing Confidential Data And Extorting Company For Ransom | USAO-SDNY

Apple declined to comment for this story. But last month’s annual regulatory filing said sales fell 9 percent in the year ended Sept. 24 due to a weaker Japanese yen.

Apple Financial Chief Luca Maestri acknowledged to analysts last month that the stronger dollar had pushed up prices for its products in some countries, but Indonesia, Despite financial challenges in Vietnam and other markets, sales are still growing by double digits.

Sales of used smartphones in Japan rose nearly 15% to a record 2.1 million last fiscal year and are expected to reach 3.4 million by 2026, according to technology market research firm MM Research Institute.

100,000 yen barrier

Taishin Chonan bought a used iPhone 13 after the screen cracked on one of the two devices he was carrying for personal use. The replacement has a higher resolution and better battery and camera than the iPhone 7 he used.

Also Read :  News Corp Says Foreign Exchange, Lower Book Sales on Amazon Weigh on Results

“So far I’ve only bought a new phone, This is my first used and bought,” said the 23-year-old Klopp. “New models are expensive.”

Even with the price hike, the iPhone 14 sold in Japan is the cheapest among 37 countries where taxes are calculated, MM Research Institute said in a September survey. The research firm said a weaker yen could push up prices further, prompting Apple to raise prices further, which could significantly erode Japan’s 50 percent share of the smartphone market.

Daisuke Inoue, CEO of Belong Inc, said the latest iPhones now cost more than ¥100,000, a psychological barrier for shoppers. and tablets online.

On Belong’s Nicosuma e-commerce site, Apple’s prices in July were slightly higher than the previous three-month average, Inoue said. At Belong’s operations center outside Tokyo. A queue of workers at a long table checking shipments of used phones; Used phones were binned, sorted and inspected before grading and cleaning.

The phones were then photographed from various angles and sold online. Belong uses Itochu’s global network to help source used equipment in Japan and overseas at the best prices, depending on location, Inoue said.

Also Read :  Smartphone app Skinive helps prevent skin cancer, yet experts are critical

He said some of the devices were bought from businesses, such as tablets that were previously used to pay at coffee shops.

Most Japanese have traditionally been wary of second-hand goods, including electronics, but that is changing.

Marketplace site Mercari saw strong sales of used smartphones, while sales of home appliances and electronics also increased, a Mercari, Inc ( 4385.T ) spokesman said.

As Japan reopens to foreign tourists, the second-hand iPhone market is booming.

Retailer Iosys Co Ltd has seen a surge in foreign tourists buying used iPhones in the past two months.

Iosys executive Takashi Okuno said: “The yen continues to fall. “The trend of buying iPhones while visiting Japan is coming back.”

(1 dollar = 147.1200 yen)

Zama, Additional reporting by Kohei Miyazaki in Japan and Paresh Dave in San Francisco. Written by David Dolan Editing by Lincoln Feast

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Related Articles

Back to top button