After requesting some quotes on computers in China-based global trade site Ali Baba, a friend of mine was bombarded with offers via email.

You can see an example in the image bellow.

The prices are too good to be true.

  • Is it a scam?
  • Can a Macbook Pro cost US$ 230?
  • If so, how can these companies sell at such a low price?
  • Is this economically possible to sell those products at that price?

EDIT: The email came from a szlc-electonic.com domain. That page is down, and it doesn't match the seemingly legit lctech-inc.com nor hktdc.com, both reported by Google as being Shenzhen Technology. It seems to indicate that the email originators are trying to impersonate Shenzhen LC Technology which doesn't sell laptops.

The screen capture:

enter image description here

  • 5
    While anyone can sell anything at any price, you'd be able to look up component costs and quickly realize this is suspect. IIRC the CPU alone on these might cost more than listed price.
    – NPSF3000
    Commented Dec 23, 2014 at 7:42
  • @NPSF3000 Would you please create an answer elaborating a little more on component prices that would made the scam obvious, including link to CPU prices ? Commented Dec 23, 2014 at 9:50
  • I can't (very busy ATM) but here's an example with sources: quora.com/…
    – NPSF3000
    Commented Dec 23, 2014 at 10:04
  • Does it say "new" in there somewhere? When I send my old Mac in for recycling, what happens to it (really)?
    – GEdgar
    Commented Dec 23, 2014 at 15:24
  • 1
    Always be suspicious of email that comes from dubious domains and discard them as spam. It's a good thing Gmail shows you the actual originating domain as the sender address can be misleading. Remember that if it seems too good to be true, it most probably is.
    – ADTC
    Commented Dec 24, 2014 at 15:30

2 Answers 2


This article claims that in 2010, the "Bill Of Material" for the cheapest MacBook Air was $718. So if, for example, Foxconn decided to buy some extra parts and do an extra shift to produce some MacBook Airs on their own and sold them at cost, they would cost $718.

The Bill Of Materials has probably gone down since then, but even so there is no way that a halfway legitimate business could sell a MacBook Air for $255.


It's likely a scam:

Apple's products have fixed prices and, for example, a MD711CH costs around 1000US$ in China:

enter image description here

Also, there is a large "fakes" industry in China. They even have tons of fake Apple stores!

enter image description here

  • 7
    I think I heard somewhere that the reason why the Chinese can do this is because China doesn't recognize foreign trademark and copyright claims.
    – Philipp
    Commented Dec 23, 2014 at 9:01
  • 1
    Please elaborate a little more, in the answer, about "fixed prices". Also, what would be the tech specs of a fake Macbook Air ? Commented Dec 23, 2014 at 9:48
  • 3
    @Philipp that's false, the shops have been shut down (it's in the linked article).
    – Sklivvz
    Commented Dec 23, 2014 at 10:30
  • @user1598390 apple does not normally do discounts, and the model is the same.
    – Sklivvz
    Commented Dec 23, 2014 at 10:32
  • 2
    Fake Apple stores are nothing compared to fake towns: spiegel.de/international/europe/…
    – vsz
    Commented Dec 23, 2014 at 12:49

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