Israel Blocks iPad Imports

| News

Apple’s iPad is proving to be popular everywhere — except Israel. The country’s Communication Ministry is refusing to let people bring the multimedia tablet into the country because it hasn’t tested and approved the Wi-Fi technology used in the device, according to Haaretz.

Ministry officials commented, “The iPad device sold exclusively today in the United States operates at broadcast power levels [over its WiFi modem] compatible with American standards. As the Israeli regulations in the area of WiFi are similar to European standards, which are different from American standards, which permit broadcasting at lower power, therefore the broadcast levels of the device prevent approving its use in Israel.”

The government seems serious about its iPad import ban. Customs officials have already confiscated ten iPads and told their owners to ship them overseas. 

The Communications Ministry has asked iDigital, Apple’s distributor in the country, for technical information on the iPad so that it can work on the approval process.

There’s no word on when to expect an official OK from the Communication Ministry, so for now it looks like all iPads stop at Israel’s border.

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As soon as they do their In-depth security testing, they’ll allow them into the country.


This is a non-story, really. The socalled “import ban” has nothing to do with Israel in particular. ALL civilized nations have a government agency equivalent to the american FCC who has to approve of devices with built in radio transmitting capabilities before they can be sold in those national markets.
It has nothing to do with Israel in particular. The same is true for all of Europe.

Lee Dronick

Are they taking iPads from tourists visiting Israel, just Israelis citizens, or both?What I am wondering at are Israelis trying to avoid an import tax or something by schlepping their own iPad into the country instead of buying from iDigital?



An Israeli who returned from the U.S. yesterday told TheMarker that when he tried to declare his new iPad at customs, it was confiscated.

Jeff Gamet

The difference between Israel’s “ban” compared to other European countries is that Israel is actively blocking people from bringing iPads into the country. In contrast, many people flew to the U.S. from other European countries to buy iPads. They haven’t been blocked from bringing their iPads back into their home countries.

Bosco (Brad Hutchings)

At least Israelis don’t have to worry about having their satirical apps from Pulitzer winning cartoonists confiscated.

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