By Shannon Najmabadi
Chinese state media has fired another salvo in their sustained campaign against Apple that began with CCTV’s March Consumer Rights Day report and included a recent accusation by the People’s Daily that Apple’s app store is full of pornography.
The latest blow against Apple is a survey, published in Friday’s People’s Daily, which claims that 60 percent of the public has a lowered opinion of Apple products and that 54.1 percent of Chinese aren’t satisfied with Apple’s after-sales service (the target of CCTV’s original report).
According to the People’s Daily, People’s Daily Strong Nation web forum collaborated with the China Mainland Marketing Research Co to find this data – using a phone system to survey 2,824 “ordinary people” in 28 Chinese cities.
Image credit: Tech in Asia.
However, Tech In Asia has raised multiple questions regarding the integrity of the survey. For example, for the question “How has your opinion of Apple products changed?” respondents were not given the option of answering that their opinion of Apple had increased.
From the CCTV report:
Isn’t [Apple] here earning Chinese people’s money? Outside China, they will give you a new back cover for free [when they replace your device] but they won’t change Chinese back covers for you. Why are Chinese consumers [treated as] less than others? This is very unfair to Chinese consumers.
Whether this smear campaign is an attempt to cripple foreign competition or a legitimate concern, stating that China does not share Apple CEO Tim Cook’s optimism over the company’s expansion in the country would be an understatement.