Apple is all set to launch its new iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus in India next week, but many it seems are not ready to wait that long. We’ve already come across instances when the iPhones were on sale in the grey market, and now customs authorities reveal an increasing number of iPhones being smuggled into the country.
The Mumbai Customs authorities have issued a directive, which says that anyone bringing in an iPhone 6s or iPhone 6s Plus to India needs to pay the relevant customs duty, ET reports. Bringing in even a single iPhone is eligible for customs duty. Failing to do so will incur a hefty fine and could even lead to an arrest.
“For goods above Rs 45,000, technically passengers have to declare but most people are not aware of it. A duty of 36 percent is levied on the amount above this limit,” Additional Commissioner of Customs, Mumbai Airport, Milind Lanjewar told the publication.
US prices for the iPhone 6s start from $649 (Rs 42,341 approximately), but add to it the relevant taxes and the total price goes beyond the Rs 45,000 mark. With the iPhone 6s Plus too priced at $749 (Rs 48,865 approximately), both the smartphones are eligible for customs duty. Similarly, if the new iPhones are bought from Singapore, where the 16GB iPhone 6s is priced at S$1,048 (Rs 48,000 approximately), again one will have to pay the customs tax.
The Customs authorities have noticed a lot of people bringing in new iPhones from countries like Singapore, Hong Kong, London, and Dubai. Authorities in Mumbai are already said to have seized around 200 new iPhones, valued around Rs 1.23 crores. Delhi is no different, and the authorities have seized around 182 new iPhones being brought in from Hong Kong and Singapore. With just over a week left for the official launch, the Customs authorities say that this isn’t the end of the smuggling and they will be stepping up vigil.
While Apple hasn’t made any official announcements, we already have a fair idea on the prices of the forthcoming iPhones. The iPhone 6s is expected to be priced at Rs 62,000 for the 16GB variant, Rs 72,000 for the 64GB variant and Rs 82,000 for the 128GB variant. The iPhone 6s Plus, on the other hand, is expected to be priced at Rs 72,000 for the 16GB variant, Rs 82,000 for the 64GB variant and Rs 92,000 for the 128GB variant.
Soon after launching the new iPhones, Apple India also revised the prices of its older iPhones . The iPhone 5S is now priced at Rs 35,000 (16GB) and Rs 40,000 (32GB), the iPhone 6 is priced at Rs 52,000 (16GB), Rs 62,000 (64GB) and iPhone 6 Plus Rs 62,000 (16GB) and Rs 72,000 (64GB). While these represent a mere Rs 3,000 price cut, one can buy an iPhone 5s online for as low as Rs 27,950. Also, the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus can be picked up for Rs 40,596 and Rs 51,000 respectively.