The NYPD says a new crime wave is sweeping through the city. Thieves and pickpockets are no longer only out to take cash and wallets, but they are targeting smartphones, iPads, iPhones and other electronics.

In first ten months of 2011, there have been approximately 16,000 robberies throughout the five boroughs.  Half of these thefts have involved the latest must-have technology and new study by the NYPD said, reported the Daily News.

This makes electronics the single most stolen property type, surpassing even hard currency, says the report, according to the Daily News.

iPhones were apparently the most sought after item for robbers, which accounted for over 70 percent of all stolen cell phones on subways and city buses. Laptops, tablets and mp3 players were also some other popular items for pickpockets and thieves, which accounted for about half of the burglaries and 35 percent of grand larcenies.

The NYPD plans to conduct sting operations in order to curtail the thefts. They will have police officers pose as thieves looking to sell stolen electronics to bodegas and delis, reported the Daily News. The report also mentioned a public awareness campaign that hopes to remind straphangers to hold onto their belongings and protect their personal items.

 It's a sound strategy designed to suppress larcenies on several fronts simultaneously, Commissioner Ray Kelly said of the report, according to the Daily News.

Of course, the carriers could brick stolen phones, making them useless and of no value on the black market--but the don't. That's been done in Australia for a decade.