China, a market crucial for Apple

Be on Skype in China is now a privilege. Tuesday, 21 November, Apple has admitted to have withdrawn the application of communication through the Internet, owned by Microsoft, the App Store in China. Other app stores that chinese, including those from Tencent and Xiaomi, have done the same. To justify this measure, Apple explains that it ” was informed by the department of public safety that a certain number of applications (…) are not in compliance with local laws, therefore, they have been removed from the App Store in China “.

For apple, the case is sensitive. It has already been recently accused of playing the game of censorship when, in July, it has been removed from the App Store chinese many hundreds of VPN software to bypass the Internet monitoring by the Beijing authorities. In a letter sent in October by Tim Cook, the boss of the firm Cupertino, us senators Ted Cruz and Patrick Leahy were worried that Apple may, in the way, ” making possible the censorship and surveillance of the Internet.”

A control in which Apple is sometimes itself directly to be a victim. Since the month of October, the call function available on the latest generation of its watches connected to – which is their main appeal – is also blocked. Here again – and in the absence of official explanation, it appears to be for the chinese government to shelve a communication technology on which its surveillance capabilities are limited.

A fragile situation

But for Apple, which has made nearly 10 % of its sales between June and September in China, no question of offending the government of a country that is the second-largest global market for smartphones, behind the United States. For the manufacturer, “the economic stakes are so enormous,” says Thomas Husson, Forrester, that the brand is ready to ” go…

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