The iPresident of Ukraine.


Victor Yuschenko, iPhone owner

Picture: The president of Ukraine, Viktor Yushenko, yakking on his iPhone. The iPhone is hot in the Slavic country.

I don’t remember it. When Jesus signed with an Ukraine mobile operator? Neither you?

Used iPhones are worth more than $1,000 in Ukraine, according to the Craigslist buyer who just purchased my slightly scratched iPhone for (get this) $350.

The buyer, named Claude, is heading to Ukraine next week on business and everyone he meets will ask him for an iPhone, he says. He’s sold dozens of iPhones, new and used: It doesn’t really matter.

In fact, I sold him two iPhones: a virgin 16-Gbyte model still sealed in its box, and my slightly worn day-to-day iPhone, an original 8-Gbyte model.

I got $850 for both phones — $500 for the new one (it retails for $500 + $40 tax) and $350 for the used iPhone (it sells new for $400 + $34 tax. I paid $600 minus a $100 rebate).

I felt pretty good until Claude told me he’ll be getting at least $1,000 for the used iPhone in Ukraine, and more for the new one. WTF! — thanks for telling me!

Still, it’s not all gravy. Claude says he has to keep the iPhones on his person when passing through customs, or they disappear from his luggage. Likewise the chargers, cords and everything else. Plus, he has to bribe every official he meets.

Claude wasn’t aware there’s a new iPhone model expected next month (which is why I’m selling). Not that it mattered. He says he’ll take all and any iPhones I can send his way.

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