Linked by KLU9 on Mon 18th Mar 2013 09:22 UTC
Apple Every year on World Consumer Rights Day (March 15), government-controlled China Central Television (CCTV) broadcasts a special report (in Chinese) damning companies for abusing Chinese consumers. This year the targets included Apple. Apple was accused of giving Chinese consumers worse service than customers in other countries, specifically of giving them replacements that included cases from their old phone, while customers in the UK would get a 100% new product.
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That is hilariously poor
by M.Onty on Mon 18th Mar 2013 09:29 UTC
M.Onty
Member since:
2009-10-23

Even EA manage to be more subtle than that.

Reply Score: 2

Yup
by Thom_Holwerda on Mon 18th Mar 2013 09:42 UTC
Thom_Holwerda
Member since:
2005-06-29

Shit like this happens all the time - only here in the west, it's done by companies.

Reply Score: 7

I don't believe it
by nej_simon on Mon 18th Mar 2013 09:44 UTC
nej_simon
Member since:
2011-02-11

The democratic and never opressive people's government of China would never do such thing. Also Apple sucks! To be posted at around 10

Reply Score: 5

RE: I don't believe it
by kwan_e on Mon 18th Mar 2013 10:21 UTC in reply to "I don't believe it"
kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

It's not a democracy, it's a republic.

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: I don't believe it
by cyrilleberger on Mon 18th Mar 2013 10:52 UTC in reply to "RE: I don't believe it"
cyrilleberger Member since:
2006-02-01

Yes lets not confuse it with the "Democratic People's Republic of Korea" ;)

Reply Score: 6

RE[3]: I don't believe it
by kwan_e on Mon 18th Mar 2013 13:38 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: I don't believe it"
kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

Yes lets not confuse it with the "Democratic People's Republic of Korea" ;)


Splitter.

Reply Score: 3

Translation
by MOS6510 on Mon 18th Mar 2013 09:46 UTC
MOS6510
Member since:
2011-05-12

I wonder if they got the translation right and perhaps meant "workers" instead of "customers".

Reply Score: 1

RE: Translation
by kwan_e on Mon 18th Mar 2013 12:18 UTC in reply to "Translation"
kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

I wonder if they got the translation right and perhaps meant "workers" instead of "customers".


In the West, everyone is a consumer. In Western business, humans are resources. In the West, corporations are people. But I guess if I have to be dehumanized, I'd rather be dehumanized in a democratic society.

Reply Score: 3

Pricing in China
by Priest on Mon 18th Mar 2013 10:04 UTC
Priest
Member since:
2006-05-12

Do items in china cost as much to buy as in the US? Also, people keep blasting Apple for Foxconn suicides but Foxconn had 4 suicides in 2011, 1 suicide in 2012 and employ a million people. Media that covers the suicides never seems to mention they employ more people than the population of a large city.

There were 349 suicides in the United States military last year and there are 1.4 million active and 900k reserve personnel.

That means the suicide rate for Foxconn workers is nearly 100 times higher than for the united states military and if I remember right it was near or lower than the United States national average.

In 2012 due to pressure from Apple over working conditions Foxconn cut worker overtime to a max of 36 hours a month. That averages to just 8 hours a week of overtime. It's barely my standard work week.

I'm willing to bet Apple is sick of people giving them crap about China.

Edited 2013-03-18 10:07 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE: Pricing in China
by MOS6510 on Mon 18th Mar 2013 10:41 UTC in reply to "Pricing in China"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

I'm not doubting what you wrote, but I do think people at Foxconn and similar companies have pretty crappy jobs and don't get very paid very well while Apple has piles of money in the bank collecting dust.

The world would be a happier place if work conditions improved and the workers could benefit from Apple's success.

BTW it's not just Apple, it's also other companies that have no problem with Chinese companies exploiting Chinese people.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Pricing in China
by Priest on Mon 18th Mar 2013 11:31 UTC in reply to "RE: Pricing in China"
Priest Member since:
2006-05-12

Foxconn is considered one of the best companies to work for in China. It is a 40 - 48 hour week of factory work. Hundreds of people show up every day to apply for jobs.

Every single job I have ever worked in the US was over a 40 hour week. At times in the military I worked close to 120 hours a week doing work that was demanding for like $20k/year. I've worked numerous jobs where 80+ work weeks were not uncommon.

I know for a fact that many of the largest companies in the united states abuse "salary exempt" status of workers to circumvent labor laws for overtime. The suit brought against EA games by wives of their workers is a great example of that.

There is always some deadline or temporary constraint that serves as a carrot on a stick. Americans on average work as many or more hours than just about any country in the world with South Korea being the one real exception.

Americans make significantly more than workers in China but it's a totally different economy. There are several major cities/employment centers in the US where 3 bedroom houses are over $500,000 + taxes etc.

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: Pricing in China
by ilovebeer on Mon 18th Mar 2013 16:57 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Pricing in China"
ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

Foxconn is considered one of the best companies to work for in China. It is a 40 - 48 hour week of factory work. Hundreds of people show up every day to apply for jobs.


Most of China is undeveloped and in poverty. All those people are showing up to apply because they're one of the biggest employers, not because they're one of the best companies to work for. Remember, Foxconn is also the place where there have been multiple suicides from workers due to work conditions. So many in fact that they've installed nets around the buildings to deter people from jumping.

It's no secret that life working at Foxconn is horrible. At least that's what the people who actually work there think. You're free to think whatever you want.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: Pricing in China
by Vinegar Joe on Mon 18th Mar 2013 11:51 UTC in reply to "RE: Pricing in China"
Vinegar Joe Member since:
2006-08-16

"I do think people at Foxconn and similar companies have pretty crappy jobs...."

I don't think you have any idea what a "crappy job" is. I suggest you work construction, outdoors, when the temperature is around 0 degrees F and the wind blowing 15 miles per hour.

Edited 2013-03-18 11:53 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Pricing in China
by MOS6510 on Mon 18th Mar 2013 11:54 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Pricing in China"
MOS6510 Member since:
2011-05-12

Yes, let's define the worst job in the world ever and state that every other job is less worse and thus a fine or even excellent one.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Pricing in China
by re_re on Tue 19th Mar 2013 13:54 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Pricing in China"
re_re Member since:
2005-07-06

Lol, I have worked in architectural sheetmetal for most of my adult life. in WI, central MN, ND, SD ....... I know about cold and it sucks when it drops bellow zero, but it's not crappy work. I love it.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Pricing in China
by oiaohm on Thu 21st Mar 2013 01:47 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Pricing in China"
oiaohm Member since:
2009-05-30

"I do think people at Foxconn and similar companies have pretty crappy jobs...."

I don't think you have any idea what a "crappy job" is. I suggest you work construction, outdoors, when the temperature is around 0 degrees F and the wind blowing 15 miles per hour.


Really I would say some of the china factories beat that hands down. At least if you don't die on the job your children are not deformed.

Some of china factories have a very bad record with personal safety gear usage and operational extraction systems and .... Yes there are a lot of china factories that if you applied USA or Australia workplace health and safety would not be allowed to operate.

Yes worst work places are workplaces without any workplace health and safety and its a complete fluke that you get to come home each night. I would say the last port of big ships where humans are cutting the ships apart without any safety gear and many each year die is the worst job on earth. You have better chances of survival on most battle fields on earth than working there.

Some of china factories are not that far behind because toxic chemical exposure and its long term effects.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Pricing in China
by Soulbender on Mon 18th Mar 2013 12:30 UTC in reply to "Pricing in China"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Do items in china cost as much to buy as in the US?


The fact that you may pay less in dollars is irrelevant, it's the same product and therefore it should have the same kind of replacements. (Presuming this is true, of course).

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Pricing in China
by someone on Mon 18th Mar 2013 12:35 UTC in reply to "RE: Pricing in China"
someone Member since:
2006-01-12

The blog did not translate this part, but Apple's practice of retaining the back panel of the old phone in the replacement was supposedly a way to get around a Chinese law that require them to reset the warranty period when they offer a replacement product. This way, they can claim that the replacement was really a "repair".

Edited 2013-03-18 12:40 UTC

Reply Score: 8

RE[3]: Pricing in China
by David on Tue 19th Mar 2013 22:35 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Pricing in China"
David Member since:
1997-10-01

So if that's true, then what Apple is really doing is trying to offer the Chinese exactly the same service as the rest of the world gets.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Pricing in China
by someone on Wed 20th Mar 2013 00:55 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Pricing in China"
someone Member since:
2006-01-12

No, because you wouldn't be getting an iPhone warranty replacement with the old back panel anywhere else. This is strictly something Apple does in China to get around a Chinese law.

Reply Score: 3

RE[5]: Pricing in China
by David on Wed 20th Mar 2013 01:04 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Pricing in China"
David Member since:
1997-10-01

That's true, but you also wouldn't get the warranty period to reset whenever you made a claim on the warranty anywhere else. That's just crazy. It give people an incentive to make specious warranty claims just to extend their warranty. If I were Apple, I'd try to get around it too.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Pricing in China
by someone on Wed 20th Mar 2013 01:11 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Pricing in China"
someone Member since:
2006-01-12

But this is China, not the US, where people can just walk in and get a replacement with no questions asked. In China, the consumer has to actually demonstrate that the flaw is related to poor quality control, and often manufacturers do not honour valid warranty claims. It's the same in the EU, they get a two year warranty, but you need to have solid evidence that you have a defective product.

Edited 2013-03-20 01:14 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE: Pricing in China
by KLU9 on Mon 18th Mar 2013 13:44 UTC in reply to "Pricing in China"
KLU9 Member since:
2006-12-06

Many items cost significantly more in China than outside, due not only to taxes but also a prestige premium that people are willing to pay for certain brands just for being that brand. e.g. 83% more for a Starbucks coffee in China than US.

This infographic shows some factors that account for the price premium in China.

http://www.east-west-connect.com/china-foreign-brand-prices

(although that graphic includes baby milk formula in the Netherlands, which I believe is subsidised by the government... which has led to yet another problem http://www.tealeafnation.com/2013/03/from-one-hub-a-view-of-chinas-... )

EDIT: I made a mistake about teh infographic, corrected.

Edited 2013-03-18 13:47 UTC

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: Pricing in China
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Mon 18th Mar 2013 21:02 UTC in reply to "RE: Pricing in China"
Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

That's interesting. Although, China has a reputation for grey market goods. How much does that factor in? From what I understand, fake apparel is par for the course there.

Obviously, a lot more difficult to fake a Jeep, than a watch. So Jeeps probably aren't faked.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Pricing in China
by BallmerKnowsBest on Tue 19th Mar 2013 15:25 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Pricing in China"
BallmerKnowsBest Member since:
2008-06-02

Obviously, a lot more difficult to fake a Jeep, than a watch. So Jeeps probably aren't faked.


You'd be surprised.

http://acidcow.com/cars/1945-fake-chinese-car-brands-32-pics.html

Of course, they still have a long way to go to match the volume of China's largest exports: spam, internet scams, and website attacks.

Reply Score: 3

someone
Member since:
2006-01-12

They have to find a more acceptable target for people to direct their frustrations on. This time, it happens to be Apple.

Besides, Apple did violate Chinese laws, which require them to cover the replacement for the same period as the original product (instead of just the remainder of the original warranty period). I don't see how this is all that different from the case in Italy.

Edited 2013-03-18 12:10 UTC

Reply Score: 1

someone Member since:
2006-01-12

Just to clarify, Apple's practice of retaining the back panel of the old phone in the replacement was to get around a Chinese law that require manufacturers to reset the warranty period when they offer consumers a replacement product. This way, they can claim that the replacement was really a "repair". This part was not stated in the blog, but they did mention that Apple was accused of not complying with Chinese laws when it comes to their warranty policies.

Edited 2013-03-18 12:36 UTC

Reply Score: 4

KLU9 Member since:
2006-12-06

The issue isn't really whether Apple did something wrong (which is perfectly likely).

It's whether there's a coordinated, paid campaign by a party/government broadcaster to denigrate a major smartphone player in what is the world's biggest smartphone market, and what that implies about the party/government's intentions for smartphone OSes (remembering that this is a party/government can and has imposed anti-foreign tech standards locally, in areas like mobile phone signal tech http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TD-SCDMA ).

The Chinese Party/Govt's habit of interference has already deterred Apple from being officially supported by the major carrier (because the iPhone doesn't support the China-only TD-SCDMA standard). Consumer desire has overcome that obstacle, but it looks like the party/govt is beginning an assault on that too.

And the long-term issue is what such interference in the world's biggest smartphone market could have on the smartphone business & ecosystem in the rest of the world.

Reply Score: 4

someone Member since:
2006-01-12

I thought the App Store was the friction point between Apple and China Mobile.

Reply Score: 2

someone Member since:
2006-01-12

If the Chinese government had really wanted to shut down foreign technology standards, they would have not allowed China Unicom (the second largest carrier) to deploy WCDMA, nor China Telecom (the old monopoly service provider) to deploy CDMA2000. Those sorts of things would require licenses in any other countries. The reason they are pushing local technology standards was to pay less patent licensing fees to foreign entities, so that they can keep more money in the local economy. This is particularly evident in the development of their high speed rail network. In exchange for access to the huge Chinese market, the Ministry of Railways negotiated permanent technology transfer agreements (they obviously wouldn't accept patent protection money) with Kawasaki (Shinkansen), Alstom and Bombardier. Siemens did want to transfer their technology in the first round of negotiations, so it did not get any contracts... In the end, Siemens had to swallow their pride (otherwise they are completely shut out of the Chinese market), and offer to transfer their higher-speed designs to the Chinese in the second round of negotiations.

Reply Score: 3

KLU9 Member since:
2006-12-06

A big part of present & past actions are definitely about patent fees, I agree.

But Android (which is their main worry, link in FP) is given away free (and I don't think Chinese companies have made patent-troll-appeasement deals with Microsoft the way Samsung et al. have).

So I feel it's more about wanting to shape the future in a way they can control or at least restrain. Perhaps an analogy is their attitude to the internet/web. They don't block it completely, but they do impose restrictions, throttles and *some* blocks on foreign players to shape it more to their liking.

Seeing how important the mobile net/web is becoming (and how many mobile apps exist to circumvent existing party/govt controls), I suspect they'd like to do the same with that. And they understand just what a big part the OS provider plays in shaping the user's access & experience (basically the same reasons why Google makes & gives away a mobile OS in the first place).

They'd much rather that level of influence over the end user was in the hands of someone they can control i.e. a domestic company.

Edited 2013-03-19 10:48 UTC

Reply Score: 4

someone Member since:
2006-01-12

That's just the original poster's interpretation (through his rose-tinted glasses), if you actually read the original source in Chinese, you would understand this is not likely part of a government-backed media campaign

Edited 2013-03-20 01:15 UTC

Reply Score: 3

KLU9 Member since:
2006-12-06

Then what do you feel is the reason for the Ministry trying to promote Chinese alternatives to Android?

Reply Score: 2

someone Member since:
2006-01-12

Because the Chinese domestic software industry needs a lift? The government has been interested in transitioning from labor-intensive manufacturing based economy to a knowledge-based economy. Xiaomi is a good start, but much of the competition now happens at the software side of the equation. They had already missed the boat when it came to desktop software, and they aren't about to do it again when it comes to mobile computing.

Edited 2013-03-20 23:51 UTC

Reply Score: 2

why not?
by distrodude on Mon 18th Mar 2013 17:57 UTC
distrodude
Member since:
2013-01-25

Let Apple do to them as they've done to the rest of the world. "Do unto others"

Reply Score: 1

Fake!?
by Brunis on Mon 18th Mar 2013 18:09 UTC
Brunis
Member since:
2005-11-01

I'm assuming they mean the service from all the fake Apple stores!? ;)

Reply Score: 3

Wow
by andrewclunn on Mon 18th Mar 2013 19:04 UTC
andrewclunn
Member since:
2012-11-05

I'm so glad that there's no fear mongering or nationalistic campaign against Chinese products in the US. I mean, if there were it would mean we half deserve this shit.

Reply Score: 4

You get what you give
by Phloptical on Mon 18th Mar 2013 23:40 UTC
Phloptical
Member since:
2006-10-10

Hello Pot, meet Mr. Kettle. Welcome to our world when we're forced to call China for "support".

They get "biased" treatment....yeah, well....tough knockers. Call India, I'm sure they'll be much more understanding.

Reply Score: 2

read the press release
by screamingturnip on Tue 19th Mar 2013 00:43 UTC
screamingturnip
Member since:
2012-04-05

Not saying I like apple but the press release seemed harsh. I mean cookie? Really cookie? they're not that um... actually wait are cookies a good thing?


Those two ladies look nice.

Reply Score: 2

I call BS?
by Dano on Wed 20th Mar 2013 23:22 UTC
Dano
Member since:
2006-01-22

I think that the Chinese that are complaining probably walked into one of those face Apple Stores that the Chinese government does not crack down on. Either that or they are just pissed that Apple is not letting them steal technology so that it can be cloned by hundreds of others.

Reply Score: 0

Ah, the Irony
by deathshadow on Thu 21st Mar 2013 13:27 UTC
deathshadow
Member since:
2005-07-12

Of a country where people have no civil rights to be bitching about consumer rights. That makes sense, sure it does.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Ah, the Irony
by sdeber on Thu 21st Mar 2013 13:59 UTC in reply to "Ah, the Irony"
sdeber Member since:
2005-07-06

So, what do you suggest? All Chinese people should abandon everything before they have civil rights? Should they all commit suicide as well? You know, since they have no civil rights any way, why do they still live, right?

Reply Score: 2

RE: Ah, the Irony
by someone on Thu 21st Mar 2013 19:53 UTC in reply to "Ah, the Irony"
someone Member since:
2006-01-12

At least they are trying to assert whatever rights they still have.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Ah, the Irony
by deathshadow on Fri 22nd Mar 2013 06:11 UTC in reply to "RE: Ah, the Irony"
deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

Except it's not 'exercising their rights' -- Or at least the last I checked there is no "right to own an Apple product" -- making both of these responses a bit... stupid.

I mean really, government run media complaining about the price of products made by a non-domestic company using domestic labor. Shocking, REALLY.

Apple products overpriced... Shocking... REALLY!

No, not shocking... the other word... wait, is there actually a word for "Why is this even news?!?"

If not there should be.

Reply Score: 2