iPad developers in China resort to grey-market imports for testing

13 Apr

Shanghai, China – ReignDesign, a leading iPad developer in China, has revealed the difficulty they found obtaining a new iPad for testing their upcoming puzzle game, “Flockwork.” Apple announced the new iPad with Retina display on March 7th, but the new device is not yet available in China. That meant developers in China have had to go to extreme lengths to import devices to use for testing.

Stephen Ceresia from ReignDesign explained: “Unlike other regions, Apple doesn’t launch its products in China right away, so we are often forced to purchase devices from other regions. Unfortunately, with every major product launch it’s becoming increasingly difficult to get our hands on new iOS devices when they’re released. With the first iPad, we picked one up from one of the city’s many grey-market electronics stores almost immediately after launch. With the iPad 2 we couldn’t find anything local, so we went to Hong Kong,” Ceresia says.

However, recent changes to Apple Retail Store policy in Hong Kong requiring pre-orders and proof-of-residency have made things more difficult. With the recent release of the new iPad, the company was forced to purchase the device through an independent US courier shortly after its launch.

Until Apple’s China product launch dates coincide with those of other major regions, most iPad developers in China are left with few options: submit an untested app, wait weeks or even months for an official product release, or find a grey-market product to test with.

“The new iPad’s retina display is a significant update, and we didn’t want to submit Flockwork without first testing it on an actual device. It was a hassle to get our hands on one, but we think it was definitely worth it to fully support the new device,” Ceresia explains. The company’s game Flockwork is scheduled for a worldwide release on April 19th on the App Store.

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Located in Shanghai, China and founded in 2004, ReignDesign is a mobile development studio that focuses on creative applications, and breakthrough user experiences. All Material and Software (C) 2004-2012 ReignDesign / All Rights Reserved. Apple, the Apple logo, iPod, the iPod logo, are registered trademarks of Apple Computer in the U.S. and/or other countries.