Chance Miller reports: Earlier this year, Apple was forced to remove several VPN apps from the App Store in China due to regulatory reasons. At the time, Tim Cook explained that he would rather not remove them, but was forced to comply.
Now, United States Senators Ted Cruz and Patrick Leahy are pressing Apple for more information…
In a letter sent to Tim Cook, Cruz and Leahy say Apple may be “enabling the Chinese government’s censorship and surveillance of the Internet,” noting that China has an “abysmal human rights record.”
Specifically, Cruz and Leahy pointed to Cook’s acceptance of the Newseum’s 2017 Free Expression Award. While receiving the award, Cook remarked that Apple “enables people around the world to speak up.” The senators, however, argue that Apple’s removal of VPN apps in China do the exact opposite of that:
While Apple’s many contributions to the global exchange of information are admirable, removing VPN apps that allow individuals in China to evade the Great Firewall and access the Internet privately does not enable people in China to “speak up.” To the contrary, if Apple complies with such demands from the Chinese governments, it inhibits free expression for users across China, particularly in light of the Cyberspace Administration of China’s new regulations targeting online anonymity.
Cook and Leahy outline a list of questions they want Cook to answer. Read the rest of this entry »
Sources indicate the Cupertino, Calif. colossus has held preliminary conversations in recent weeks with executives in Hollywood to suss out their interest in spearheading efforts to produce entertainment content. The unit putting out the feelers reports into Eddy Cue, who is Apple’s point man on all content-related matters, from its negotiations with programmers for Apple TV to its recent faceoff with Taylor Swift.
An Apple spokesperson declined comment. Read the rest of this entry »
“Apple’s Gay CEO Tim Cook Wants to Boycott Indiana for Its Allegedly Anti-Gay RFRA, But Will Gladly Sell You an iPhone At Its Boutique in Riyadh, Where They’ll Stone You to Death For Being Gay.”
Ramesh Ponnuru writes: Tim Cook, the chief executive officer of Apple, is spreading misinformation about a new religious-freedom law in Indiana. That law and similar ones, he writes in the Washington Post, “say individuals can cite their personal religious beliefs to refuse service to a customer or resist a state nondiscrimination law.” He goes on to claim that they “rationalize injustice by pretending to defend something many of us hold dear. They go against the very principles our nation was founded on, and they have the potential to undo decades of progress toward greater equality.”
“What these religious-freedom laws say is that government can require people to violate their religious beliefs only when it is pursuing a compelling interest, and must do so in the least intrusive manner possible. Thus the Supreme Court recently ruled under a federal religious-freedom law that a Muslim prisoner doesn’t have to shave his beard.”
Discrimination against gay customers or employees is what opponents of the law are especially concerned about. But that’s a strange argument to make in the context of Indiana, which lacks any state nondiscrimination law on sexual orientation for people to resist. Discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is legal almost everywhere in the state, and was before this religious-freedom law passed.
“Cook may not be aware of this point or others that cut against his argument because reporting on this controversy has been abysmal. Cook may also be unaware that the ‘wave of legislation’ that he fears has largely already happened. A very similar religious-freedom law has been on the federal books for 22 years…”
Cook may not be aware of this point or others that cut against his argument because reporting on this controversy has been abysmal. Cook may also be unaware that the “wave of legislation” that he fears has largely already happened. A very similar religious-freedom law has been on the federal books for 22 years, and that law itself codified a Supreme Court doctrine that had been in place for most of the previous few decades. Nineteen states besides Indiana have similar laws. Read the rest of this entry »
Mike Beasley reports: Apple’s upcoming wearable will appear on the cover of Vogue China’s November issue according to Business of Fashion. Several styles of the device will be worn by supermodel Liu Wen.
“Chinese people are actually very digitally minded and we embrace new technology and digital products more easily than perhaps people elsewhere…We are an ancient country but at the same time a very young country when it comes to fashion and new products. We love to embrace everything that is new, modern and positive.”
— Vogue China EiC Angelica Cheung
This comes just a few weeks after Apple’s one-day-only special showing of the Apple Watch during Paris Fashion Week, proving that the company is taking a much more direct approach to the fashion world. Read the rest of this entry »
— Joanna Stern (@JoannaStern) September 9, 2014
I have to admit, the new iPhone is beautiful. pic.twitter.com/AZq3U74Zec
— Saladin Ahmed (@saladinahmed) September 9, 2014
Justin Danhof, Director of the Free Enterprise Project (and one of Tim Cook’s least favorite investors) joined the program to discuss his recent dust-up with the Apple CEO… Apparently, Cook thinks that return on investment isn’t nearly as important as pursuing “green energy” dollars from DC.
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“If you want me to do things only for ROI reasons, you should get out of this stock.”
As Glenn Reynolds says “Duly noted”
From 9to5Mac: As planned, iPhone sales have started via China Mobile, the largest carrier in China, today. The official iPhone China Mobile deal, which covers both the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c, was announced in December. Earlier this week, Apple CEO Tim Cook promoted the event with multiple interviews, calling the partnership a “beginning.” Subsequent reports indicated that millions of iPhones have already been ordered through China Mobile…
In a rare TV interview, Tim Cook described this week’s launch of the iPhone on China Mobile as “a watershed day” for the company. While the soft-spoken Apple CEO is noted for the humbleness with which he speaks, it’s hard to imagine him describing Apple as being “honored” to do business with many other companies.
“I’m so honored to be doing business with … China Mobile. It’s a huge announcement…we’re incredibly impressed with them, we have deep respect for them, and have had from the very first discussion that we’ve had together” …
The long-awaited deal will see Apple sell its iPhones in the world’s largest smartphone market via China Mobile’s retail stores on January 17 for the first time
Rebecca Clancy writes: Apple has announced a long-awaited distribution deal with China Mobile, the world’s biggest phone carrier, which could generate billions in revenue for the world’s most valuable tech company.
Demand for iPhones, once hugely popular in China, have slumped there as lower-priced rival smartphones from Samsung and Chinese companies entered the market.
The financial terms of the deal were not announced, nor were the details of pricing and availability for its latest iPhone, the 5S and 5C lines, which Apple said would be available at a later date.
The phones will go on sale in China Mobile’s retail stores on January 17 for the first time, but customers will be able to pre-order from December 25.
Made in USA: Apple to Build New Manufacturing Facility in Arizona with Solar-Power, Will Create 2000+ JobsPosted: November 4, 2013
The State of Arizona today announced that Apple is planning to build a new manufacturing facility in the city of Mesa, Arizona. The facility will create 700 jobs for manufacturing, and an additional 1,300 jobs for the construction and management of the new facility, In total, Apple will be bringing at least 2,000 new jobs to the United States thanks to this new facility.
In addition to the manufacturing facility, Apple will be constructing a new solar power grid in the city to power the manufacturing operations, according to Arizona’s announcement:
“Apple is indisputably one of the world’s most innovative companies and I’m thrilled to welcome them to Arizona,” said Governor Brewer. “Apple will have an incredibly positive economic impact for Arizona and its decision to locate here speaks volumes about the friendly, pro-business climate we have been creating these past four years. Their investment in renewable energy will also be greening our power grid, and creating significant new solar and geothermal power sources for the state. As Governor, I’ve worked hard to demonstrate that Arizona is open for business. Today’s news is proof that’s paying off.”
Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook has taken plenty of flack for running a company that is supposedly well past its glory days—and the iPhone smartphone franchise is sometimes dismissed as a spent force, losing ground to more innovative brands such as Android and Samsung. Well, here’s a little perspective for the Apple-haters.
The iPhone 5s and 5c sold a record 9 million units during the first weekend after its launch. Consider this: The brand’s sales haul over the last four reported quarters eclipses that of such companies as Home Depot (HD), Microsoft (MSFT), Target (TGT), Goldman Sachs(GS), Amazon (AMZN), PepsiCo (PEP), Comcast (CMCSA), Dell (DELL), Google(GOOG), Pfizer (PFE), and UPS (UPS).
If this single product were its own company in the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index, IPhone Inc. would outsell 474 of those companies—ranking between Wells Fargo (WFC) ($90.5 billion) and Marathon Petroleum (MPC) ($84.9 billion).
Apple revealed that it sold 9 million of its new iPhones since they became available Friday, setting a company record for weekend phone sales. Read the rest of this entry »
Representative Keith Ellison (D., Minn.) just can’t wrap his head around why Apple wouldn’t “step up” to pay more in taxes.
“It seems to me they ought to want to help to pay the expenses of this country, so that everybody can have a fair shot,” Ellison said on MSNBC’s The Ed Show over the weekend.
”I don’t think they’ve got warm blood, I really don’t.”
Ellison found it “really disappointing” that Apple wasn’t willing to pay higher taxes, arguing that it “wouldn’t be a multi-billion-dollar corporation but for the fact that the United States of America made it possible for them to be that successful.”
“Taxes are not a punishment,” he explained, “taxes are the dues we pay to live in a civilized society.”
Apple’s CEO Tim Cook testified before a Senate subcommittee last week over the company’s tax-avoidance practices. Schultz later questioned whether what Apple was engaging in was “morally right,” concluding ”I don’t think they’ve got warm blood, I really don’t.”