Made In China

Sure, Why Not: Desperate Apple Fans in China Slap Gold Stickers on Their Old iPhones

Looks legitimate.
DIY!

DIY! (Photo: Taobao.com)

Why wait in line for a gold iPhone 5S when you can just slap a sticker on your old one? That’s what shrewd customers in China are doing. Online merchants are seeing an uptick in sales of gold handset stickers for several iPhone models, because apparently they just can’t wait for the real version.

The Wall Street Journal writes that the stickers go for $2 each on Alibaba’s retail website–and presumably take less than several weeks to get one. Thousands of the stickers have been sold, but there’s a common complaint of “discrepancies in color and size.” You get what you pay for!

The DIY packet looks about one grade level higher than a Brit+Co project:

“Dear, you don’t need to sell your kidney for the new iPhone,” one of the ads said.“Instead of paying 5288 yuan (the retail price of the 16-gigabyte iPhone 5S in China), you only need to spend 35 yuan to make your iPhone 5 look like a golden iPhone 5S in seconds.”

It’s not entirely surprising that the populist knock off is flying off shelves. In China, gold symbolizes wealth and is commonly seen as a status symbol. The country’s thirst for gold is partly to blame for the shortage of gold iPhone 5S models stateside, where demand won’t be met until December.

Hopefully this will tide you over until then.

Follow Jordan Valinsky on Twitter or via RSS. jvalinsky@observer.com