Vision Pro traders used bots to place thousands of pre-orders

A new report reveals that Vision Pro traders used bots to place thousands of pre-orders for the device, with eBay ads appearing even before pre-orders opened. eBay listings It showed prices up to $10,000.

Although placing a Vision Pro order requires an Apple ID and facial scanning, the company, which works to help businesses block bot activity, says these bots were able to circumvent facial scanning.

The robot makers were well prepared, Casada says.

Over the past month, Casada has noticed chatter within the bot communities about their interest in the Apple Vision Pro in anticipation of one of the biggest scalping opportunities of 2024. The interest has included developers updating modules within their existing bots (or adding support for Apple) including offering Service providers offer AIO bots (all-in-one bots) for purchase for those willing to pay for them […]

Days before the pre-order event, people who want to be among the first to try this new device can purchase a “confirmed pre-order” Pro Max 256GB on secondary markets for up to $5,999 – a 70% increase.

End-to-end bots are able to complete the entire purchasing process without manual intervention.

Once pre-orders opened, Casada says, he monitored the bots' activity to determine whether they were being used successfully to complete thousands of purchases. Only one of them was used to successfully verify 1,592 Vision Pro pre-orders.

Vision Pro scalpers circumvented the blocks

Placing a pre-order for the Vision Pro was more complicated than most purchases, as it required an Apple ID and facial scanning. The company speculates that in addition to ensuring correct sizing, this may have been intentional by Apple as a barrier for scalpers. If so, this has failed.

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Apple IDs are available for purchase on the Dark Web, and others may have been created by scalpers before pre-orders opened. As for the facial measurement phase, the robots were programmed to simulate the examination procedure, then send encrypted data in response.

Although this means that all scalpers using a particular bot will end up with Vision Pro units assigned to the same face (that of the bot developer), Apple's return and exchange policy means that end customers will be able to exchange them for the correct product. Sizes.

Some robots are set up for in-store pickups

Some robots are being used to create in-store pickups, so facial measurements can be taken in-store to ensure the correct fit for the end customer, Casada says.

Users can search inventory based on geographic location, walk into the store to do a head scan using one of their devices, and checkout. The user can easily create another Apple ID if asked to do so and duplicate it in another Apple Store. And from the messaging seen so far, they are doing so more in urban areas, as Apple is more likely to have multiple stores and higher inventory in such areas.

The irony is that legitimate first-day in-store pickup is still available in some locations.

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