Independent dealers are box-breaking mobile broadband dongles to create bigger profit margins for themselves.
London’s Fone Doctors proprietor Faisal Sheikh said he knew about five other dealers who were buying prepay dongles from distributors for around £58, unlocking them and selling them on for around £110. This compares with an average £70 sale of a network prepay dongle, said Sheikh.
“The dongles are more sellable this way, just like an unlocked phone. When people go overseas, they can put a local SIM card in it so they aren’t subject to exorbitant data roaming rates,” he said.
“It’s not illegal, and if a distributor stops me from buying them, I’ll buy elsewhere. There is no commission on prepay dongles so we can’t get clawed back.”
Meanwhile, 3 has reduced the price of its black and green ZTE and Huawei E220 USB dongles to £49.99, down £50 on the original price.