Technology: Will Tim Cook’s visit to China save Apple?
Apple seems to be having problems in China, and Tim Cook, the company’s CEO, hopes to set things right.
In what seems to be a rescue mission to save Apple, Cook will hold discussions with senior Chinese government officials and Communist party leaders sometime this month, reported The Guardian.
Of late, Apple has been suffering setbacks in China. Its smartphone sales dropped; it’s iTunes and iBook services were blocked. The company even lost a legal battle with Xintong Tiandi, a Chinese leather accessories manufacturer who has been using the iPhone logo on their products.
To cap it all, billionaire activist investor Carl Icahn sold his entire stake in Apple, citing China’s economic slowdown and worries about whether the Chinese government could make it difficult for Apple to conduct business.
In the past few weeks, Apple has wandered into the crosshairs of China’s ongoing campaign to control and curb web content and ensure localization of data storage.
But Apple isn’t the only victim. Harsh censorship has also shut down the online services of many foreign tech companies such as medium.com, a high-end blogging platform.
This comes after Beijing introduced regulations imposing strict curbs on online publishing, particularly for foreign firms.
Last week Apple reported its first quarterly revenue drop in 13 years. Although Apple reported a 26% drop in revenue from Greater China, which includes Hong Kong and Taiwan), Cook remains optimistic. “When I look at the larger picture, I think China is not weak as is talked about,” Cook said. “I see China as … a lot more stable than what I think is the common view of it. We remain really optimistic about China,” Cook told CNBC.