Technology prices in South Africa have increased significantly in recent months, and the price of smartphones has also been affected.
These increases can be attributed to the falling value of the rand against the US dollar, as well as supplier shortages due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
South African mobile operators have also faced a shortage of Apple iPhones specifically, which is only now beginning to be alleviated.
Cell C previously told MyBroadband that this shortage could be attributed to three incidents – the Chinese New Year, COVID-19 related supply challenges in China, and the lockdown restrictions in South Africa.
Certain products from Samsung, Huawei, and LG were also affected, but iPhones were the most heavily impacted.
Some mobile networks said that despite production and supply interruptions, they were able to cover stock shortages thanks to well-managed inventory processes and timely delivery during level 5 lockdown.
Many South Africans may feel that these increased prices mean they are paying inordinately high prices for smartphones and other tech products than other countries around the world.
iPhone 11 price comparison
To give an idea of how South African prices differ from those charged for these products overseas, we looked at the price of a new iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and iPhone 11 Pro Max in the following countries:
- South Africa
- United States
- United Kingdom
As sales tax is not included in the price of an iPhone in the United States, we added an average markup of 7.25% to make this price more comparable with that of other countries.
It is important to note that the real combined sales tax rate would depend on which individual state the iPhone was purchased in.
The price of these iPhones was converted to South African rand using the exchange rate at the time of writing, and this figure was used to rank the prices from most expensive to cheapest.
While this provides a rough idea of how much more South Africans pay for iPhone 11 devices, it should be noted that this price difference may be influenced by a number of factors.
These include shipping costs, as South Africa is much farther away from Apple’s global distribution centres than many other countries in this comparison.
Import duties may differ compared with other countries as well, meaning that local distributors may be charged more for bringing iPhones into the country than distributors in Europe or Australia.
Sales volumes are also a consideration, as local distributors may not be able to import as many iPhones as international distributors, and therefore they will not benefit from bulk volume discounts to the same extent.
iPhone 11 – South Africa vs The World
The prices of iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and iPhone 11 Pro Max smartphones in South Africa and a number of other countries are listed below.
|iPhone 11 64GB|
|United Kingdom||£729 (R16,758)|
|United States*||$751 (R13,128)|
|iPhone 11 Pro 64GB|
|United Kingdom||£1,049 (R24,139)|
|United States*||$1,074 (R18,870)|
|iPhone 11 Pro Max 64GB|
|United Kingdom||£1,149 (R26,435)|
|United States*||$1,181 (R20,750)|
|*Average sales tax of 7.5% added to the price.|