Aug 31

Rimo IT Center in Denpasar Bali If you are into Electronic Gadgets, you might think that a holiday destination like Bali is not the right place to buy or bargain for the latest toys. Tech hubs like Singapore, Hong Kong and Bangkok dominate this area in Asia.

In general, you are better off purchasing your new Laptop or Android Smartphone in one of those places. But thankfully, things are changing fast and the population of Bali (and its Expat Community) are getting more and more tech affine. This provides new opportunities to sell IT and gadget gear here also and suppliers make increasingly use of it.

So where are the places to go and get your fix, if you have a gadget addiction?

Bali – Electronic Gadget Heaven?

Bali has currently between 4-5 Million residents, depending on whom you ask and what season you come here. While most of its population is still working in agriculture or is employed in the tourism industry, electronic helpers like laptops, smartphones and even iPads can increasingly be seen in public. If you think that most of this stuff is imported, you are only partially right, as more and more options are available locally for desperate tech geeks.

IT and Computer Products

Bangkok has its Panthip Plaza or Powerbuy Shops, Kuala Lumpur its Low Yat Plaza, Singapore is blessed with a Funan IT Mall or Sim Lim Tower/Square and Electronic Supermarkets like Challenger, Harvey Norman, Best Denki or Courts. Here you can find great bargains and products with Asia- or even Worldwide warranty. The equivalent to go to in Bali (sans international warranty) is Rimo Center in Denpasar’s Jalan Deponegoro.

While housed in a 3-stories high building with around 100 shops all under one roof, it’s nowhere near as big as its big brethren in the former Asian capitols. Still it has its charm.

Rimo Center in Denpasar BaliSome good bargains can be had here also, if you do your homework and know the standard prices for the stuff you want. The vendors there would have no shame to sell you any electronics for a multiple of what its worth, but if you know its value, you can negotiate your hearts out and leave home with a great deal and without spending time and money on a return flight to an Electronic Haven elsewhere in Asia.

Laptops of Acer, Asus, Toshiba and MSI seem to be the popular Laptop/Notebook brands here, but there are also some Chinese or cheaper local brands.

For nerds, modders or people just looking for the latest software title for bargain prices: In Rimo you can find the full spectrum of PC products and accessories; be it complete PC’s, Laptops, Netbooks, desktop cases, graphic cards, power supplies, hard drives, printers, coolers, cartridges, speakers, mice, joysticks, memory cards, camera and what else.

Also, some Telecom companies have permanent booths here, advertising their internet products like Telkom Speedy, Flash, Smart EVDO and others.

Another central location to visit would be Carrefour in Jalan Sunset/Bypass, as it sells quite an extensive range of household items, IT technology and other Electronics. Most prices seem to be higher though, than for same products in Rimo, although you usually get a better exchange policy or official warranty.

A tip: if your favorite item is out of stock here, head over to Carrefour Dua (the former Alfa Market) just around the corner in Jalan Imam Bonjol, as it sees less customers, but sometimes gets more stock than it can actually sell.

For Apple products, you can head to the main Carrefour building as well, which has an official Apple Center on its 2nd level. There seems to be another one somewhere in Jalan Teuku Umar, although I never saw it, as am not using Apple Products.

Handphone/Mobile Phones and accessories

The best place to go for mobile phones, repair/service and accessories is without question Jalan Imam Bonjol and its extension Teuku Umar.

Especially the later part of Teuku Umar Barat is practically plastered with Phone Shops. Big showrooms with various brands and models are door to door with smaller distributors. Here you can also find most Service Centers of the bigger brands of mass feature phones, like Samsung, Nokia, Sony Ericsson or Nexian, a very competitive local handset manufacturer and overall the Number 2 of phone companies in the country.

Nexian is also working hand in hand with most network providers in the country (ESIA, Telkom, Fren, Indosat, XL, Telkomsel), providing them with more innovative phone models. Besides the normal GSM and CDMA feature phone models, they also offer for instance budget Touchscreen, Dual SIM and even Android phones for budget prices, for which most bigger brands are not willing to compete anymore.

You can get their already cheap handsets even for subsidized prices, if you decide to sign a contract with one of the bigger mobile providers.

Be aware however, that most SIM cards sold here are still prepaid and people are changing their numbers often, when cheaper offers and promotions become available.

If you crave for something more upmarket, Blackberry as well as HTC (Windows Mobile and Android Smartphones) are present in Bali and have a joined shop in Denpasar’s Jalan Panglima Sudiman, near to Robinson’s and McDonalds. Although prices here are around 20-30% higher than in Singapore and if your phone breaks, they will be sent abroad for repair, as the attached service center has only limited repair capabilities, mainly only for software/firmware related problems. Apple’s iPhone is not offcially available in Bali, although some imported ones can be found regularly (along with iPads) appearing in Free Advertising  papers like Bali Advertiser but for exorbitant prices.

miami florida bayfront skyline on sunny afternoon For Pulsa (the local equivalent for Top Up/Load or whatever else you want to call your mobile credits), the whole of Bali has small shops selling physical (per Scratch Card) or electronic pulsa at almost every corner. Just be aware that you usually end up paying more than the value you receive, as those sellers usually add between 1K to 4K Rupiah to the value on top of the discounts they already receive by mobile operators.

In the Service Centers of Telkomsel (i.e. Jalan Bypass near Airport, Jalan Diponegoro in DPS), XL (Jalan Bypass opposite Carrefour, Jalan Legian near Cafe Moka), Indosat (Jalan Bypass near Airport) and the like you should be able to get Pulsa without those extra money for middle men, although you would have to drive around a bit.

Entertainment Electronics and Household appliances

Carrefour Bali in Jalan Sunset The biggest stock of those you can find probably again in Carrefour. Washing Machines, TV’s, DVD Players, but also Coffee Machines, Blenders, Rice Cookers, Electronic Fans, Toasters, Air Con Units. For a broader choice of do-it-yourself items, Ace Hardware near Kuta Galleria could be your choice, with comparable prices and usually great warranty options.

Other options are the larger electronic shops along Jalan Teuku Umar (before the Roundabout and Teuku Umar Barat), with generally lower prices than Carrefour or Ace Hardware.

Ramayana Shopping Mall Denpasar BaliIt pays also to visit the Hardy’s chain of shops, which have lesser choice, but competitive prices. The Ramayana and Matahari chains of shopping centers are similar and comparable to Hardy’s, with mainly Home Electronic, like Stereo/Radios, Watches, Clocks or cooking equipment, while the Hypermarket supermarkets are more like Carrefour, focusing on food and drinks also, but carry home electronics from TV’s to computers as side offers.

Courts (in DPS and Jalan Bypass near the airport) is here also and sells besides its main focus furniture, electronic household devices, home theaters, LCD and Plasma TV’s and home music equipment.

Bintang Supermarket in Jalan Legian should be your last resort, as they carry only a few products with generally higher prices, as they mainly cater to permanents residents and Expats in the Legian/Seminyak area.

The same goes for Bali DFS Mall Galeria, as besides a Hypermarket it mainly houses specialty shops with generally higher prices, catering to rich tourists. A Sony Center can be found here also.

Another great options to purchase Electronics in Bali could be Online Shopping, unfortunately some of the biggest retailers like Amazon still have Indonesia on their blacklist of countries. Too often things get lost in the shipping process and there are legends of boxes and containers stuck in customs, waiting for their recipients to pick them up for a ‘special fee’, so there is obviously still a bit of catching up to do with the real world.

Where do you get your Electronic Gadget Fix? Did I miss out on some cheaper options with more choice?

Please help to fill the void and comment about your tips and tricks!

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written by Chris

22 Responses to “How to get your Electronic Gadget Fix in Bali”

  1. MikeNo Gravatar INDONESIA Says:

    If you like HP computers there is a good HP store on the first floor of Rimo (on the left as you enter). They offer good, friendly service and their prices seem reasonable.

    I also bought an Epson printer and got the mod with the ink refills that sit outside of the printer and even doing a lot of printing over the last year, I still haven’t had to do refill the ink.

    PC Max seems to be the place for Apple products.

  2. ChrisNo Gravatar INDONESIA Says:

    Nice additions, thanks Mike! Although the link to PC Max didn’t work, so I took it out. Where are they located, also in Rimo?

  3. phiNo Gravatar UNITED STATES Says:

    I don’t think any place beats out HK for smart phones. Glad to hear Bali is making its way up though.

  4. SergeyNo Gravatar INDONESIA Says:

    Avoid Nexian if you are looking for Android phone – they are quite slow at updating their old models to new version of Android. The reason – they are using the cheapest and slowest processors for these phones. If you are looking for cheap android – better to look at SE X10mini – it cost less than 3mil, but it is much faster and will have 2.1 android soon.

    What is good in Bali that you can find ultra-cheap netbooks here – there are range of netbooks on old Atom processors with 1GB at less than 2.5 mln. That is very rare offer in Asia expt China.

  5. ChrisNo Gravatar INDONESIA Says:

    Sergey, thanks, those are great tips! I’m personally not a friend of gadgets from Sony (or Apple for that matter), as those are always trying to close their ecosystems down even further to lock you into a purchase cycle; but then price-wise it might be an option. Sony really had to drop the ball here due to their outdated use of Android, the high-end Samsung Galaxy S costs currently 6.5 Mio Rupiah in Carrefour, but then, it’s state of the art and even Froyo (Android 2.2) leaked out already for this device, something what probably won’t happen anytime soon for Sony or Nexian devices.

    The info about the netbook is great! Just for traveling around, writing and surfing those devices are more than sufficient for sure!

  6. himmi pkNo Gravatar PAKISTAN Says:

    here is also a computer related store based in despensar bali
    i found this from google

  7. vicongNo Gravatar INDONESIA Says:

    In Indonesia the most complete computer shop is at Mangga Dua Jakarta. Almost all hardware brand that come to Indonesia have their distributor HQ or just representative there.

    Now lot of indonesian buy computer part online, from shop ( etc), forum (Kaskus, Chip Indonesia etc), and mailing list (gadtorade, id-android etc). But if you not familiar with online transaction in Indonesia, I can’t recommend to do that.. lot of frustation or even worse fraud.

    I sell computer part online for hobby in my spare time at some maling list by doing this I can know better about computer hardware.. but not cost an arm dan leg just to buy it :D

  8. juhaNo Gravatar INDONESIA Says:

    I just arrived in Bali and tried to get a Telkomsel Simpati SIM card with Bra Bayar Internet service that is supposed to cost 100,000 IDR for 500 MB of data. Otherwise fine, but no mobile shop in Kuta area was able to sell me one. They told that I need to go monday to Telkomsel service center in Kuta or Denpasar. Kuta location would be closer, but I have not been able to figure out where Pertokoan Soka Bali Arcade at Jl. Raya Ngurah Rai is. Is it close to the airport or closer to Sanur? If close to airport, perhaps I could be able to handle the 30 day visa extension during the same trip.

  9. ChrisNo Gravatar INDONESIA Says:

    juha, depending on what time you drive and what route you take, both locations are about the same distance from Sanur. You could easily cut right through Denpasar coming from Sanur, but it can be lots of traffic there. The Jalan Bypass is normally faster, but the Telkomsel Shop (which is near the airport) is also smaller than the main office in DPS just opposite Rimo, That doesn’t mean, they will not be able to help you, you might be even serviced faster, as the main shop has usually long waiting Qs. The smaller outlets don’t handle so many service requests. Of course you could combine it with visiting the Immigration Office at the airport, although you could also combine the main office with visiting the main immigration office in Renon area, Jalan Panjaitan which is on the way to the Telkomsel main office. Sounds all too confusing? Lol! You can’t really go wrong with either option, time is an endless resource in Bali and nobody can predict, how long it will take in any of those locations – Telkomsel or Kantor Immigrasi. ;-)

  10. juhaNo Gravatar INDONESIA Says:

    Just to complete the story, I rented today a bike and drove to Telkomsel office in Denpasar. There I was able to get Telkomsel Flash Unlimited Internet service added to my normal prepaid simPATI SIM card. It costs 100,000 IDR for 30 days @ 384 Kbps. A 14 day service is also available for 50,000 IDR. This service is a big improvement to what they had a year ago.

    It turned out that tFlash Unlimited service could have been bought anywhere, i.e., no need to go to Telkomsel office. You simply purchase 100,000 IDR worth of pulsa to your simPATI SIM card and then register for the service by sending a SMS message. It is really weird that shops that sell pulsa in Kuta/Legia area don’t know about it.

    — Juha

  11. ChrisNo Gravatar INDONESIA Says:

    juha, great that worked well for you! Hope you have the same success at the Kantor Immigrasi for your Visa Extension. In case of doubt on how to proceed, check this article here. ;-)

  12. himmi pkNo Gravatar PAKISTAN Says:

    thanks every one for info :)

  13. Yin YinNo Gravatar CANADA Says:

    Where can I buy Nintendo wii in Bali?

  14. LnorNo Gravatar INDONESIA Says:

    Lenovo available anyewhere? i380 chipset. Help appreciated :)

  15. AndrewNo Gravatar AUSTRALIA Says:

    Hi Chris, could you tell me exactly where the Telkomsel shop near the airport is? When I arrive at the airport I would like to get to the shop first before doing anything else.

  16. ChrisNo Gravatar INDONESIA Says:

    Andrew, you go from airport to Jalan Bypass or Jalan Sunset road and then turn left. The Telkomsel shop is about 300 meter down the road, but unfortunately on the opposite site of the road, that means you would have to U-Turn at the next best opportunity. Taxi driver will know, no worries. ;-)

  17. AndrewNo Gravatar AUSTRALIA Says:

    Great info, thanks Chris!

  18. AndrewNo Gravatar AUSTRALIA Says:

    Oh, just realised I will be arriving on a Sunday… is the shop open on weekends?

  19. ChrisNo Gravatar INDONESIA Says:

    No idea, Andrew. I would guess it’s closed or opened half day only. Sundays in Bali are veryyy quiet. :D

  20. AndrewNo Gravatar AUSTRALIA Says:

    Thanks, I think I get the picture. Looks like I will be without a phone until Monday :(( How will I survive???? ;-)

  21. ChrisNo Gravatar INDONESIA Says:

    Ah, come on! Just buy a SIM card at any small shop, costs around 5-10K Rupiah, they are literally everywhere. Normally it comes with small manual on how to set up the internet also. No need to go to Telkomsel or any other provider’s store for that. Piece of cake, really! ;-)

  22. ArtNo Gravatar CANADA Says:

    I’m looking for a New Nintendo Wii & games in Bali, in the North would be great but I’ll go to Denpasar if needed; could you please point me in the right direction…Thx

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