The Wall Street Journal reports that turnout for the launch of the iPad mini and fourth-generation iPad in China today was fairly low, with Apple's lottery system and two-per-person limits for in-person sales of the iPad mini said to be making it more difficult for scalpers to run their operations.

beijing sanlitun ipad mini launch
iPad mini on display at Apple's Sanlitun retail store in Beijing

The scalpers were still present, however, as the report notes that a number of them were set up some distance away from Apple's Sanlitun store in Beijing to collect units purchased by others.

On Friday morning, Apple’s Sanlitun store opened to no crowds, but a large group of scalpers was standing a hop and skip from the store entrance collecting iPad Minis from Chinese customers in exchange for cash. Behind them, on a nearby bench, sat tall stacks of the devices.

A Wall Street Journal reporter was accosted by the scalpers after he tried to film the scene, but Apple and mall security declined to intervene in the situation.

Li Yongqiang, 18, said he wasn’t picked in the lottery to purchase the iPad Mini but still arrived at 8:30 a.m. to observe the atmosphere. Mr. Li said scalpers met with a crowd of about a hundred outside the Apple store to discuss the process of purchasing the iPad Mini. The crowd appeared to be predominantly made up of customers there to purchase the product on behalf of scalpers, he added. It’s not clear how the scalpers were able to get so many of their people selected for the lottery.

Apple continues to hold a dominant share of the tablet market in China as it does in many countries around the world, and with China now responsible for 15% of the company's revenue, Apple is no doubt hoping for strong sales of the latest devices heading into the end of the year.

Related Roundup: iPad mini 5
Buyer's Guide: iPad Mini (Don't Buy)

Top Rated Comments

D.T. Avatar
108 months ago
A local resident was interviewed about his interest in an iPad Mini, and said, "I build the things all day long, I sure as hell don't want to see one at home..."
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
somethingelsefl Avatar
108 months ago
what I don't get is how do you have thousands of dollars worth of apple products just sitting there and no one comes up and tries to rob them....
Probably the exact same reasons that people don't steal them in other countries.

MR moderators must have their hands full trying to keep out racism in every single China-focused post. It's unbelievable.

----------

Why is there so many asians at that store? :confused:
What value does your comment add to MR? Is it even related to Apple in the slightest?
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
rollzst Avatar
108 months ago
A local resident was interviewed about his interest in an iPad Mini, and said, "I build the things all day long, I sure as hell don't want to see one at home..."
Erm no because they are not even build in Beijing!
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Lark.Landon Avatar
108 months ago
Do you usually type/talk without thinking? Clearly you have no idea what you're saying.

Couldn't it possibly be because the Apple store is in an upscale mall in one of the biggest cities in China, where the average patron wouldn't blatantly steal goods in broad daylight (or any other time of the day)?

Really? Because it sounds like you're trolling.

Most nations have much more rigid punishments than the United States. Only in America can you go to prison and still earn a high school diploma, watch television, browse the internet and play games.

Yes, the scalpers are in a high traffic area and that is probably why they aren't getting robbed. BUT punishment are much worse in other countries. FFS the Chinese beat people with flashlights for being Christian.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Icaras Avatar
108 months ago
Do you usually type/talk without thinking? Clearly you have no idea what you're saying.

Couldn't it possibly be because the Apple store is in an upscale mall in one of the biggest cities in China, where the average patron wouldn't blatantly steal goods in broad daylight (or any other time of the day)?
I said "probably". Meaning, its just a guess on my part. The fact is China is still a strictly government controlled nation. Don't forget Facebook and Google are banned in China.

Do you usually get your panties all tied up in a knot on Internet forums?
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
thelookingglass Avatar
108 months ago
Probably because this is China, a very strict communist country with probably more severe criminal penalty laws than your average western nation.

Do you usually type/talk without thinking? Clearly you have no idea what you're saying.

Couldn't it possibly be because the Apple store is in an upscale mall in one of the biggest cities in China, where the average patron wouldn't blatantly steal goods in broad daylight (or any other time of the day)?
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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