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Apple probing Brazil for iPhone intro?

updated 12:55 pm EDT, Fri March 28, 2008

iPhone Brazil

Representatives from Apple recently visited Brazil in attempts to gauge the feasibility of an iPhone introduction in the country, reports indicate. A number of hurdles to introduction exist, including a high smuggling rate (90% of iPods sold in the country are imported illegally), steep taxes and more. Portal Exame reports that in December, Apple sent its senior-manager of governmental affairs for Latin America, Susan Cronin, directly to Brasilia. According to sources, Apple plans to introduce the iPhone in Brazil and, given high-enough demand, start manufacturing devices there at a later date.

Cellular carrier Vivo, part of the Telefonica group, is widely regarded as the prime candidate for hosting the iPhone in Brazil.

Brazil is the sixth largest country-market in the world, according to the International Telecommunications Union. Portal Exame points out that Ireland and Austria -- two countries where the iPhone recently launched -- comprise a potential market of about 12 million buyers: one-tenth of Brazil's potential market. However, the size of the smartphone market in Brazil may be significantly smaller. In 2007, only 2.2 million such devices were sold there.

Meanwhile, the iPhone could be headed to Mexico as soon as June, a Mexican newspaper reports. The paper cites a source within Apple, who says that the company is in talks with Telcel, Mexico's largest cellular carrier.

by MacNN Staff



  1. climacs

    Joined: Dec 1969


    probing in Brazil

    sounds like fun to me.

  1. Will53

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Fun and fun...

    Try to walk in some of the poorer districts of Sao Paulo late at night and weʼll see how fun you find that:) But seriously, if they really start manufacturing the iPhone there - which is necessary to avoid the steep taxes which results in totally absurd prices which again is the reason why 90% of the iPods are smuggled in - then let us hope that they will start manufacturing Macs there as well. Macs in Brazil are absurdly priced, while lots of PCs are being produced within the country and are sold to normal prices. And the Brazilian economy is on the rise and the middle class is increasing while the poorest classes are decreasing - along with the super-rich. Apple would be wise to get a foot in there in time.

  1. ricardogf

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Fun, fun and fun

    Actually Washington, D.C. has higher homicide rates than most big cities in Brazil, so you don't have to come to Brazil to experience violence...

    I was the one bringing the news tips to MacNN after reading about it on PortalExame...Apple is definitely checking the possibilities, since Brazil is a huge market that grows at exponential rates, with the super-rich REALLY rich and willing to pay for any iPhone well as a growing middle-class able to take on the newest technologies, provided the government eases the ridiculous import and industrial taxes imposed there...

    No wonder Apple is looking, as it's among the 10 biggest economies of the world even if with much less population than the U.S., India or China...

  1. Constable Odo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    How many iPhones...

    are we talking about being sold in Brazil? Half a million, maybe? I'll settle for that. It sure beats a blank. How many iPhones might sell in Mexico? Two hundred thousand? I'll take it. Anything for Apple to reach that 10 million unit mark for 2008.

  1. bmn

    Joined: Dec 1969


    sounds like fun

    Sounds like lots of fun, will53, when you try to walk in some of the poorer districts of any big US city. So not comment what you do not know.

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