Goddamnit, Asians and their iPhone troubles never end. The story of a 19-year-old international student from India being bilked by another suspect store at Sim Lim Square in Sinagpore has just emerged from The Straits Times (they should be sending royalty checks to Sim Lim Square mobile vendors for single-handedly giving their publication LIFE right now).
This time, the culprit is a store by the name of Mobile 22, which has had 10 complaints filed against them with The Consumers Association of Singapore during the period from August to October of this year alone.
The student, who chose to remain anonymous, says she agreed to pay $999 for an iPhone 6 from Mobile 22 after shopping around Sim Lim Square for the best deal — although at this point, I think “deal” and “Sim Lim Square” just do not go together in a sentence.
After signing off on a $39.99 fee for the phone’s warranty, she was surprised to find out her debit card had been charged $1,000 — more than the price of the phone — for the warranty alone.
The student told The Straits Times in an email:
“There was an ‘x’ between the 39.90 and 24 months that the seller had very strategically covered with his finger while urging me to sign the document.”
When she went back to the store to ask for her money back, the store employees allegedly ignored her and yelled at her, even while she begged, crying, for the money back to pay for her school tuition fees. “I’m a middle class student from India. I barely had money to buy the phone let alone pay for this,” she explained.
After confronting them, the store charged her “only” $551 of the $1,000. The costs of dealing with the shady store has left the student living on meals under $4.
The 19-year-old told TST:
“That day still haunts me. It was my worst experience in this country for I was told that Singapore was a safe city and incidents like these don’t occur.”
Fortunately enough, the Indiegogo campaign started for Mobile Air victim Pham Van Thoai will be diverting its extra funds to the Indian student, according to the latest update posted by campaign owner Gabriel Chang.