Tag Archives: Apple

Is Apple Losing Favor?

26 Sep
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Apple has a problem. . .

Six years ago when I first came to China, Steve Jobs was their hero much like Jack Ma. He came from a nondescript background and built a billion-dollar company.

They loved anything and everything Apple — walking in with the newest iPhone was a necessity for flaunting economic status much as wearing Louis Vuitton or Coco Chanel.

This week I polled my students about their impressions of the new iPhone.

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Approximately 200 students spread across five classes participated as I asked them

  • 1) Who (if you had the money) would purchase the new iPhone? and
  • 2) Who (even if you had the money) would not?

Amongst all the students (and with a good 80-85% participation rate), fewer than 15 raised their hands that they would buy. The vast majority actively stated they had no interest in the new phone.

Many cited appearance, but others pointed to

  1. Customer service,
  2. Unreasonable pricing for the value,
  3. Expensive and incompatible accessories,
  4. Non-integration with educational and professional needs (.pages doesn’t open on many computers), 
  5. Preference for domestic brands 
  6. Other

These students are in one of the most expensive programs in China. They ARE the ones who have the money . . . if they aren’t buying, it’s not looking good. 

Anyone else get similar impressions?

Life in China ~ “Recent ITunes Problems”

24 Apr

“Apple’s iBooks, iTunes Movies mysteriously suspended in China; customers want refunds”

by Julie Makinen via “LA Times”

Apple

Chinese customers of Apple’s iTunes Movies and iBooks services are seeking refunds on their purchases amid reports that the features have been suspended at the behest of government authorities.

Apple has not issued any statement to customers in China about the status of the services, but many users report that they have been unable to connect to the movie service and iBooks since April 15.

A Beijing-based Apple spokeswoman said: “We hope to make books and movies available again to our customers in China as soon as possible,” but she would not elaborate on why the services were unavailable.

The Chinese government has not issued any statement on the matter. However, the New York Times, citing two anonymous sources, said the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television had ordered the services offline, though it was unclear why.

Apple’s App Store revenue has surged in China in the last year, overtaking Japan as the world’s No. 2 market for the service, according to App Annie.

Apple technical assistance and account service representatives, reached by phone in China, said they had received no official notice from the company that the services had been blocked or shut down. They offered to arrange refunds on purchased content. . . .

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Legitimate (aka Real) Apple Stores in China

23 Jan

China, love it though I do, is quite the producer of Apple fakes.  In fact, just about every name brand product has been re-created here lacking a brand. 🙂  

In regards to clothing and accessories (and sometimes food) woohoo! Cheap products! You’d be surprised how often the fakes look, feel, wear, and sometimes taste like the real thing.  To be honest, most of us can’t really tell the difference. So many real companies re-package their products for sale in foreign countries, that we can’t tell if the product is a fake or just a “re-designed” legit item.  

However, when it comes to electronics, not so fun.  While I hear some complaints about random items, nothing compares to the tears over fake Apple products.

Did you know the Apple IPhone 6s is actually produced in Zhengzhou, Henan, China (my home)?  It’s true! We have one of the large FoxCon factories here, and many of my students worked there this past summer helping to manufacture the Iphone.  

But that doesn’t mean we get a good price. Apple products are one of the things statistically the same price or more expensive than in America.  Given the cost of Apple products and the inability to repair fakes, most people try to avoid the fakes if at all possible.  And the fakes are almost indistinguishable from the real products until you try using them or repairing them.  It’s extremely hard to tell when you are visiting a “real” Apple store and when it is an independent seller.  

In the interest of helping some fellow Laowai (foreigners) out, I decided to share Apple’s list of approved Apple stores.  You can find this list (and the lists for other countries) on their website www.apple.com/retail/storelist/.  These stores are the only stores in China that Apple itself has approved to sell their products. If you really want to verify that you have the real thing, try to check out one of these stores.  And avoid online retailers if at all possible!

Shanghai

  • Shanghai, Shanghai iapm
  • 999 Middle Huaihai Road
  • Xuhui District
  • 200031 Shanghai
  • 021 3332-6000
  • Shanghai, Nanjing East
  • No. 300 East Nanjing Road
  • HuangPu District
  • 200001 Shanghai
  • 4006639988
  • Shanghai, Pudong
  • No.8 Century Avenue IFC Mall
  • Shop LG2-27, Lujiazui, Pudong District
  • 200120 Shanghai
  • 0212033 5300
  • Shanghai, Hong Kong Plaza
  • 282 Huaihai Zhong Road
  • Luwan District
  • 200021 Shanghai
  • 021 2312-2800

Beijing

  • Beijing, Sanlitun
  • Building 6, No. 19, Sanlitun Road
  • Taikoo Li Sanlitun, Chaoyang District
  • 100027 Beijing
  • 010 5931-2100
  • Beijing, China Central Mall
  • China Central Mall
  • 81 Jianguo Road, Chaoyang District
  • Beijing
  • 010 5940-3300
  • Beijing, Chaoyang Joy City
  • 101 Chaoyang North Road
  • Chaoyang District
  • 100000 Beijing
  • 4006171284
  • Beijing, Wangfujing
  • Beijing apm, No. 138 Wangfujing Street
  • Dongcheng District
  • 100006 Beijing
  • 0105657 2000
  • Beijing, Xidan Joy City
  • 131 North Xidan Avenue, Joy City
  • Xicheng District
  • 100032 Beijing
  • 0105882 5200

NANJING

  • Nanjing, Nanjing IST
  • 100 Zhongshan Road
  • Xuanwu District
  • 210008 Nanjing
  • 4006171334
  • Nanjing, Wonder City
  • 619 Yingtian Road
  • Yuhuatai District
  • 210000 Nanjing
  • 025 5186-9000
  • Nanning, MixC Nanning
  • 136 Minzu Avenue
  • Qingxiu District
  • 530000 Nanning
  • 4006171265

XIAMEN

DALIAN

  • Dalian, Parkland
  • 19 Jiefang Road
  • Zhongshan District
  • 116000 Dalian
  • 4000560921

TIANJIN

  • Tianjin, Tianjin Joy City
  • 2 Nanmenwai Street
  • Nankai District
  • 300199 Tianjin
  • 022 5998-3200

GUANGZHOU

  • Guangzhou, Parc Central
  • No. 218, Tianhe Road
  • Tianhe District
  • 510000 Guangzhou
  • 4006139742

CHENGDU

  • Chengdu, MixC Chengdu
  • No. 8 Shuangqing Road,
  • Chenghua District
  • 610000 Chengdu
  • 0286528 0800
  • Chengdu, Taikoo Li Chengdu
  • 8 Middle Shamao Street
  • Jinjiang District
  • 610000 Chengdu
  • 4006171275

WUXI

  • Wuxi, Center 66 Wuxi
  • 139 Renmin Middle Road
  • Chong’an District
  • 214000 Wuxi
  • 0510 8508-7000

HANGZHOU

  • Hangzhou, MixC Hangzhou
  • 701 Fuchun Road
  • Jianggan District
  • 310000 Hangzhou
  • 0571 8991-1000
  • Hangzhou, West Lake
  • 100 Pinghai Road
  • Shangcheng District
  • 310006 Hangzhou
  • 0571 8790-0000

SHENYANG

  • Shenyang, Zhongjie Joy City
  • 5 Xiaodong Road
  • Dadong District
  • 110042 Shenyang
  • 024 3162-2000
  • Shenyang, MixC Shenyang
  • 288 Qingnian Street
  • Heping District
  • 110000 Shenyang
  • 4006171274

SHENZHEN

ZHENGZHOU

  • Zhengzhou, MixC Zhengzhou
  • 10 Minzhu Road,
  • Erqi District
  • 450099 Zhengzhou
  • 0371 6033-7200

CHONGQING

  • Chongqing, Jiefangbei
  • 108 Zourong Road
  • Yuzhong District
  • 400010 Chongqing
  • 023 6399-7300
  • Chongqing, MixC Chongqing
  • 55 Xiejiawan Street
  • Jiulongpo District
  • 400050 Chongqing
  • 023 6346-3000

Life in China: Apple I-Pad

12 Jun

Apple I-Pad

The Queen is NOT amused.  In fact, I’m pretty down-right Pi**ed (pardon the language).  After all the trouble I’ve had, I thought it pretty necessary to update all future China-Travelers to the dangers of buying/using Apple products here.

I don’t remember if I told you all this, but Lawrence the Laptop has had another revolt. He attempted going on strike via a broken LCD screen; I cut him off at the start via a nice HDMI connection to my television.  Unfortunately, he laughed in my face and promptly refused to work without the HDMI connection. No need to get into it, it was a whole thing.  

So last November, I bought an Ipad 2 during China’s version of Black Friday. I’ve had an I-Pod for several years, which lasted pretty well and I figured I’d give their tablet a try.  YES, I checked and it is a legit Apple I-Pad; had it tested by the real Apple Company in Zhengzhou (it’s on the apple website as a legit seller).

WRONG!  BAD! Stupid Olivia!  

Here’s Why. .

Price: 1800 RMB (approx. $300)

Review: The price was a little expensive for my tastes (almost all of Apple is), but I figured it was worth the bargain.  Apple products in China tend to run a bit pricier than products in America. Go figure given that they are literally produced about 10 miles away in the city I live in.  They have their own personal runway at the international airport they ship so many Apple products out of here. Yet we still get charge at least 50% again as much as American buyers.  So, I had to wait until 11/11, China’s Black Friday shopping day to pick one up from Hong Kong.  

Initial Purchase: Semi-Good; Semi-Problematic

Review: The first shipment I got was not too terrible.   It came with the charger, a cover, a screen protector, and ear plugs, pretty sweet all together.  The I-Pad itself was unmarked and undamaged, it seemed like everything would be okay.

It worked for about 2 hours, and then problems started.  The swiping part of the screen wasn’t working. It would stall up, like the screen was locked. You could go up about half an inch and down about half an inch, but otherwise nothing was happening. Buttons wouldn’t click, etc.  So we tried turning it on and off again (the answer to most issues), which revealed that the lock screen was not working either. Once again, I couldn’t swipe from the screen saver to the unlock screen. When I did finally get to the lock buttons, it froze and wouldn’t click them.  Tried a hard reset and several other options, nothing worked.  

So we called the seller and sent it back.  They kept it for about two weeks and finally sent me a new version.  This one seemed fine, so life moved on.

Use: Final Product

The final I-Pad I got worked fine soft-ware wise.  Sometimes it would randomly shut down songs or the internet would stop working, and none of the VPNs like it at all.  Otherwise, it was great and I was happy.

Hard-ware wise, the screen cracks like crazy. Literally, press to hard on the screen when punching a button and the whole screen cracked.  I put on a super duper safety case on it intended for toddlers, took it off and the whole edges were broken.  I asked the computer fix-it people and they said it sounds like I was sent a re-furbished model that had a cheap screen put on it.  The screen supposedly should not have cracked like that, but they verified the computer was really apple so they think the screen was just replaced with a cheapo version.  

I was not happy, especially knowing it takes 300 RMB to fix the screen. Furthermore, they admitted that if the top screen breaks the second lower screen there may be no fixing it at all?!?  0_0 Don’t you think that’s something they should have told me about before I bought the I-Pad?  I did a ton of research into I-Pads, I asked questions, and this never came up.  

ERROR: Blue Screen of Death

Anyways, along I go using  my ipad for about 5 months, when suddenly the screen goes blue and the whole thing just shuts off.  Black. Off, no charging, no connecting to the computer, no nothing.  Reset doesn’t work. Plugging it in to the computer doesn’t work. It is dead as a doornail for no apparent good reason.  No warning, that would be too nice. Just stops in the middle of a show.  Takes with it my calendar, contacts, messages, photos, videos, notes, everything. So off I go to the computer store to have it fixed.
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VPN Update in Asia

26 Jan

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So, reports have been out recently that the VPNs in Asia aren’t working as well as normal.  The reports are definitely true.  Actually the internet in general isn’t working that strongly right now, but that could just be my specific place.  O_o

But in general, Astrill has been causing a lot of problems recently, as have ExpressVPN and VyprVPN.  Astrill is completely uncommunicative on Apple products, which is a bite to a lot of people here at my institution.  I’m not so sure about the others working on Apple, but I know that a lot of PCs and Androids are also having problems.  So far, Astrill is working just fine on my PC, but not all the time on my Samsung DuoS phone and not at all on my IPad.

Astrill says it is attempting to update an app for use in Asia, but we’ll see how it goes. To be honest, I don’t know a lot of VPNS that work well on IOS systems at any time.

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