Apple Store, Shanghai

Apple Store, Shanghai

Beijing Morning News reports that local ticket scalpers have found a new way to make money on Apple: booking up all available Genius Bar appointments and then offering them for sale online.

Ticket scalpers usually make their money by buying large quantities of event tickets as soon as they go on sale then illegally selling them for more than face value once the event is sold out. With Genius Bar appointments, they don’t even need to fork out cash in the first place: they just use a bunch of email addresses to make the appointments then advertise them online.

Appointments sell for 10- yuan ($1.60-6.40) in a country where the average monthly salary is equivalent to $580. A Beijing Morning News reporter found there were no appointments available on the Apple site for iPhone, iPad or iPod. They contacted one of the advertisers asking for an appointment the next day and were offered a choice of two local stores and two time slots. The reporter was sent login details for the booking by instant messenger, and was then able to access the booking on the Apple site to change the details to their own.

The reporter contacted Apple for comment, but had not received a reply at the time of writing.

Thanks, Numble.