Fake Apple stores are nothing new. China has a slew of them, all polished and shiny, appearing almost as if they are the genuine article at a glance. Quartz dug up some details on Afghanistan’s (fake) Apple store, and although it’s a bit more frumpy than most, it still gets the job done.
Located in Afghanistan’s largest mall in Kabul, the country’s lone, fake Apple store has got the geniune goods, and they move fast. The store’s manager, Mohammed Nasery, told Quartz he manages to sell a couple of laptops ever day, and about a half a dozen iPhones, all at just slightly above their American prices. Considering he buys them from Dubai for about retail price, that little boost lets him carve out a small but existant profit.
Last year, in an interview with students from USC Annenberg, Nasery described his business this way:
Well, Afghans don’t have a lot of money, so to own an Apple you need to have a good job. I’d say that most Apple consumers are pretty young, from around 25 to 35. These are the people who work either as translators for the military or who work on aid projects. I’ve seen people come in here and blow a whole month’s salary on an iPad. [A 16gb iPad sells here for around $US800.] It’s very trendy to own an iPhone or an iPad. These young Afghans work around foreigners who have iPods and Macs and iPads, and they want them too. They see them in movies and on TV. Or they see their friends using them, and they get jealous. Like I said, it’s trendy.
The store has been doing well thanks to local demand, and is currently looking forward to some expansion down the line. If Apple ever decides it’s time to bring an official presence to Afghanistan, they’ll know who to ask. Or who to promptly put out of business. [Quartz]