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NY Teen Faces Trouble for Selling White iPhone 4 Kits

Nov 17 2010, 8:17am CST | by , in News | Apple

NY Teen Faces Trouble for Selling White iPhone 4 Kits
 
 

Get you white iPhone 4 stuff while you can

Apple is militant about security and product control. The company is one of the best at keeping a lid on the products until they are officially launched. That said, before the iPhone 4 hit the market one of the workers on the project left a prototype on a bar stool one night leading to some serious legal issues for one infamous tech geek with Gizmodo.

Another legal row over the iPhone 4 is apparently brewing for a teen in New York. The kid is 17 and his name is Fei Lam. Lam knows a guy in China who has ties to Foxconn, the company that builds most of the iPhones for Apple. The guy was somehow able to get the teen parts that would transform the current iPhones into white iPhone 4 devices.


The official white iPhone has been delayed repeatedly so far making many fans froth at the mouth for the lighter colored device. As it stands now the official white iPhone 4 isn’t expected until next year. The rumored reason for the delays is that the two makers of the white components have been unable to get the colors to match on the panels.

Lam used his Chinese source to get the parts to geeks that would then convert their iPhones themselves. The New York Observer reports that the teen sold only a few kits daily at first and was losing money. Then he was covered by tech publications like CNET, CNN, and TechCrucnh leading to $130,000 in sales since last August.

Lam said, "I'm very thankful, cause for months I was struggling for an idea that would bootstrap my first startup and help pay for college."

Thinks are looking murky for Lam right now. He told the New York Observer, "I got an email from a private investigator accusing me of selling stolen goods, which I'm 100 percent sure is not the case. They are some kind of anti-counterfeit/trademark firm, which sounds ridiculous, similar to what Apple is bringing up to remove White iPhone 4 Listings on eBay. I don't know how this legal stuff works."

Apple has made no official statement on the issue at this point. I have to wonder how the kid though his Chinese Foxconn contact was getting the stuff legally. It’s not as if you can walk up to Foxconn in China and buy white iPhone 4 components at a gift shop. I'd bet the mysterious contact is simply swiping white components slated for destruction after delays or just taking them from shipping crates or the assembly line and selling them for extra money.

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