Leaked photos show Brazil-made 8GB iPhone 4 with custom model number
Though the 8GB iPhone 4 is not expected to go on sale in Brazil until the iPhone 4S arrives in the country, MacMagazine.br has received alleged early photos of the device from a reader. The back of the handset contains the words "Brazilian Industry" in Portuguese, as well as the stamp of approval from ANATEL, the country's telecommunications agency.
The iPhone 4 reportedly came with iOS 5.0 installed and carries a model number that ends with "BR," presumably indicating that the device was manufactured in Brazil. The most recent leak comes on the heels of last month's release of factory documentation for an 8GB iPhone 4 allegedly from Foxconn's facilities in Brazil. Shortly after that leak, Apple announced the 8GB iPhone 4 alongside the iPhone 4S.
Apple's manufacturing partner Foxconn is said to be considering an investment as large as $12 billion on production facilities in Brazil. But, according a report from September, negotiations between the company and the government have stalled because of disagreements over tax rates, unprepared infrastructure and the lack of qualified workers.
The Brazilian Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation had previously said that the first iPads produced by Foxconn in the country would arrive in December. A "reliable source" told MacMagazine.br that "Made in Brazil" 8GB iPhone 4 units are also expected to hit the local market in December. Distribution will reportedly start in Sao Paulo, Brasilia and other major capitals first before gradually expanding to other cities in the country.
Localized Foxconn production of Apple products in Brazil may help the company circumvent sizable tariffs on imported electronics. After tax, some of Apple's devices in Brazil cost more than double their original retail price.
If the company's products arrived on the Brazilian market without import taxes, Apple's sales in the country could see rapid growth. Apple revealed last quarter that sales in Brazil had jumped up 118 percent year over year to pass the $900 million mark.