Gadget Panda Study Reveals Truth About US and UK iPhone Prices on Launch Day

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Information gathered by Gadget Panda shows the iPhone has almost always been cheaper in the US than the UK, with Brits paying over £100 more than American consumers for the first generation iPhone, and all releases since the iPhone 4S. With the new Xbox and PlayStation also costing more on UK shores, the recycling firm is reminding tech fans to do their research before splashing cash.

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We know import taxes aren’t paid on smartphones, and even when you account for 20% VAT, the differences just don’t add up.

A new study by Gadget Panda reveals just how much UK tech fans have historically forked out for Apple iPhone models on launch day – and shows the iPhone has been as much as £139 cheaper in the USA.

And as a wave of new tech devices hit the market, including the new iPhone 5S and 5C, and the soon-to-be-released next-generation consoles from Microsoft and Sony, Gadget Panda is reminding people to do their research before parting with cash.

The technology recycling firm collated pricing data and found that since the iPhone 4 launched in 2010, Apple users in the UK have paid, on average, around £120 more for an unlocked, 16GB version of the smartphone on launch day – based on an exchange rate of 60 cents to the pound.

Apple’s new iPhone models – released on Friday, September 20 – have seen amongst the highest price increases when they hit UK shores, with both the iPhone 5S and 5C being cheaper in the US.

The 16GB, unlocked and contract-free iPhone 5S retails at $649 (£410) in the states – the same model in the UK will cost £549, an increase of £139.

Even the cheaper 16GB unlocked and contract free iPhone 5C will cost approximately £82 more in Britain. ( (

The data shows this is nothing new. For example, the 16GB unlocked, contract-free iPhone 5 cost £129 more in Britain, and the first generation iPhone cost a whopping £139.50 more.*

Leonard Stumke, Gadget Panda spokesman, said: “It’s been a long-held view that we pay through the nose for new gizmos in the UK, while US gadget lovers get a better deal.

“Unfortunately for cash-strapped British consumers, our study shows the anecdotal evidence was right on track – at least when it comes to UK iPhone prices on launch day.

“Often, tech manufacturers blame import taxes and VAT for the price hike – but we know import taxes aren’t paid on smartphones, and even when you account for 20% VAT, the differences just don’t add up.”

Apple smartphones aren’t the only tech products to cost more on British shores. The recently-announced Sony Playstation 4 costs £349.99 to pre-order in the UK, and $399.99 (£253.01) in the states. ( (

The Xbox One is available to pre-order for £429.99 in Britain, and for $499.99 (£316.45) in the United States. ( (

UK tech lovers haven’t always been stung by price increases, though – Gadget Panda’s study shows Brits paid less for the 8GB iPhone 3G and 3GS on 24-month O2 contracts than Americans paid for the same phone, on a similar contract with AT&T. ( (

Leonard Stumke believes UK consumers need to stay savvy to avoid getting stung by UK prices on technical goods.

“The old adage, good things come to those who wait, rings true when it comes to the latest tech,” he said.

“There’s no problem with forking out hundreds more than Americans to buy a gadget on launch day – as long as you’re aware that you’re paying a premium.

“The UK tech market is becoming ever more competitive – especially when it comes to smartphones.

“With a little patience and a little research, you could get hold of the latest phone for cheaper, as great-value contract deals could soon be available.

“The savviest shoppers could save even more by waiting for used and refurbished models to become available, which can cut hundreds of pounds from the launch-day price tag.”

Through Gadget Panda’s website, users can sell iPhones and other smartphone devices. The firm then reintroduces them to market so they don’t end up in forgotten corners of drawers, or worse, on landfill sites.

Leonard Stumke says: “If you’re the kind of gadget devotee who’s got to have the latest tech on launch day, then you could sell iPhone 4S or older devices online, and use the cash to buy the new model.

“Many users don’t realise the strength of the used gadget market.

“Early adopters are, in the grand scheme of tech sales, something of a rarity – so there are always people looking to pick up smartphones and consoles which are a generation or two old.”

As well as being able to sell iPhone devices, users can sell iPod MP3 players, and iPad tablets online through Gadget Panda.

The company also accepts Samsung Galaxy and Google Nexus tablets, Nintendo DS and Sony PSP handhelds, and many more tech devices.

Sellers typically receive payment within 24 hours of the device being received.

To see Gadget Panda’s research in full, visit:

For more information about Gadget Panda, visit:

*Comparing a 4GB model with a 24-month AT&T contract in the US, and the same model with a 24-month O2 contract in the UK, with an exchange rate of 50 cents to the pound ( (


Notes to editors

For press enquiries, please contact Leonard Stumke at lstumke(at)gadgetpanda(dot)co(dot)uk, or call +44 (0)845 094 0799.

About Gadget Panda

Gadget Panda is a gadget recycling specialist based in Surrey. It accepts iPods, iPhones and iPads, as well as handheld gaming consoles, tablet computers, and smartphones, and in return provides fast cash payment. Upon receiving the gadget, Gadget Panda aims to provide cash payments within 48-hours. It diverts technology away from landfill sites by reintroducing it back to the market. For more information, visit:

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