Chinese scalpers are feeling the squeeze. Seven years ago, a generation of them struck it rich by reselling the iPhone 4 for as much as RMB 10,000 (around $1,500 for a phone that launched for up to $699) to Apple fanatics and curious consumers. One day after iPhone 8 hit the shelves in China last week, scalpers were offering the 4.7-inch gold model for RMB 500 ($75) cheaper than the shelf price.

“It’s the first time this has happened, that the [scalper] price slipped below the launch price within one day,” a scalper from Beijing’s tech hub Zhongguancun told local media (in Chinese).

In stark contrast to the swarm of buyers and scalpers outside Apple Stores in the past, the queuing railings set aside for iPhone 8 launch across China are far from being filled. The tepid reception of the new model has sent Apple’s stock down the worst weekly performance during the week of a major product launch since the first iPhone release in 2007.

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Rita Liao

Telling the uncommon China stories through tech. I can be reached at ritacyliao [at] gmail [dot] com.