iNO: iPhone 5 is NOT yet sold out in India

[Editorial notes: Yesterday, Indian media was abuzz with stories on how iPhone 5 is sold out in India, but we found the reality to be far away from the truth. Our intern, Ishan Vyas ended up buying the iPhone 5 and shares his entire experience].

So I finally went to Imagine Store in Bangalore’s UB city to buy the iPhone 5 and  was disappointed when they said its out of stock. Not only was it out of stock, but they said they aren’t taking any bookings either.

But I wasn’t ready to give up as yet. I quickly called Justdial and spoke to a couple of phone dealers. And surprise! Everybody had it. By this time, I’d decided to buy the phone only from a premium Apple reseller. So I made a dash for the iStore on M G Road. And its back to the old script: We are sold out and have also stopped booking new phones.

But, I ended up buying the phone from Univercell and since I needed a scratch guard,(only available at the Imagine Store at UB City), I went back in there and asked how sales were doing. The store had sold a measly 300 phones in the first two days and stopped sales. Seriously. Just 300.

This was at the imagine store but the iStore stopped selling around the same time as well – so I’m guessing they didn’t fare any better.

So what’s the big fuss about? It was widely reported recently that all the phones were sold out in India. That made headlines all over the place. But surmising from my experience, that’s a bit misleading.

Small stores still have a lot of stock in both black and white color iPhones. The Univercell store representative also told me that they are taking big corporate orders and in Bangalore – “The Imagine Store is the only distributor so we are placing orders with them.”

Is Apple playing number game in India, selling only a few hundred phones through their premium stores and creating an artificial shortage to generate a buzz in the market? Or is it part of a strategic shift to sell more  through resellers and distributors to reach a wider market in India?

Tell us what you think? We don’t know the truth behind this but Apple had gained massive traction just because they claimed that all the sales is now stopped for the iPhone5.

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