Mainland China to get iPhone 4S by Jan. 23

This is great news for the Chinese readers, according to People’s Daily, the official news outlet in China, Apple has been given the green light to start selling their immensely popular iPhone 4s in Mainland China.

The report in People’s Daily reads as follows:

“After obtaining the network entry permit from the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology of China (MIIT), the iPhone 4S received China Compulsory Certification (3C) for electronic products on December 22, meaning that it has met all the requirements for coming into markets of China”

During the third quarter of 2011 China surpassed the U.S. as the largest smartphone market in the world, China saw 23.9 million units shipped, while the U.S. saw 23.3 million units shipped.

Currently the hottest feature of the iPhone 4s, Siri is only available in English, however it is expected that Apple will introduce support for Mandarin, China’s most popular language, sometime in the first quarter of 2012.

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Workers At Apple’s Keyboard Supplier in Shenzhen strike due to poor working conditions

If you think the employees at Foxconn were the only Apple product producing workers to be unhappy then think again, las week 1,000 workers at a Jingmo Electronics factory in Shenzhen, China, staged a strike over long hours and poor working conditions.

The factory supplies keyboards to companies like IBM, LG, and Apple, and China Labor Watch is now calling for these companies to improve the working conditions for the employees at the factory, focusing specifically on Apple.

The Jingmo plant, which is owned by Jingyuan Computer Group, one of the world’s largest keyboard manufacturers in Taiwan, employs around 3,000 workers in total, roughly around 10% of which are said to be on the Apple assembly line.

Management are reportedly forcing staff to work unreasonable levels of overtime that equate to around 120 hours extra a month, according to M.I.C. Gadget:

The workers are pissed of the management’s decision to enforce nightly overtime, adding a 6 p.m.- 12 p.m nightly shift to their regular hours of 7-11:30 a.m. and 1-5 p.m. That accounts for approximately 120 hours of overtime per month!!! They were also refused the right to work this overtime on the weekends, which would have required the company to pay workers double time under Chinese Labor Law.

In addition to enforcing overtime, workers’ grievances are said to include common workplace injuries, the dismissal of older workers, a lack of benefits, and verbal abuse from managers, according to China Labor Watch, which is urging Apple in particular to take responsibility:

“China Labor Watch calls upon Apple, IBM and the other clients of this factory to assume responsibility for these workers’ dissatisfaction and work with the factory to improve the working conditions in the factory. We particularly urge Apple to take responsibility, as there are more than 300 workers working on the Apple keyboard assembly line.”

“Apart from the overtime issue, the workers said that they also had other grievances with the factory. These include the high rate of workplace injuries (there have been nearly 20 recently), mass layoffs of older workers and the lack of any benefits. Apart from these more tangible hardships, factory managers often verbally abuse and bully the workers, causing them severe emotional distress.”

Hong Kong Has More iPads Per Person Than Any Other Country

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Wow these numbers are amazing Apple’s iPad is so popular in Hong Kong that one in six Hong Kong citizens own the device.

That means around 17% of Hong Kong’s people own an iPad, according to MIC Gadget, which is six times the global average of 3%. The market research was carried out by TNS, who surveyed 34,000 people from 43 countries — 501 of which were in Hong Kong.

What’s just as impressive is that 50% of those in Hong Kong said that intend to purchase a tablet, which is higher than the global average of 15%. In comparison with China, where only 2.1% of citizens own an iPad, just 5.9% of its people said they plan to buy one. And in the U.S.? 5.3% of Americans own a tablet, and 20.3% intend to buy one.

Of course, Apple’s device dominates everyone’s wish-list. Over the past 12 months, 500,000 tablets have been sold in Hong Kong, with a staggering nine out of ten being the iPad. However, MIC Gadget doesn’t believe all of those iPads will be used by their purchasers:

The data is stunning, however, we don’t believe the locals are using it after buying it, since there’s a grey market in the city, where you can sell the iPads for profits. So, how many of the devices were bought by locals and how many by tourists could not be confirmed.

LAPD seize $10 million fake iPods and iPhones.

Fake

In the past fee years there has been a growing problem for Apple, “Counterfeits” as the iPhone and iPod have gained popularity among consumers, they are also becoming more popular among counterfeiters.

Now however LAPD has made a giant leap in the fight against fakes, Port police in Los Angeles busted a counterfeit iDevice operation with a warehouse full of fakes with an estimated market value of $10 million.

“This was a well-funded operation, and the counterfeits looked very authentic,” said Ron Boyd, chief of the approximately 200-member L.A. Port Police force, adding that a buyer might not have noticed anything awry until he or she got home and tried to hook up with iTunes.

During the course of the investigation, police found bank account receipts that indicate the operation had already generated more than $7 million in profits.

Chinese MacBook Pro knockoff comes with Snow Leopard pre-installed

Fake Mac

In the past years we have seen numerous different Apple clones, some very well done, while others have been obvious fakes. Now Chinese knockoff maker DragonFly has just made their already shameless MacBook clone even more shameless.

The previous 14-inch netbook already looked so similar to the real deal that it could fool anyone not familiar with the exact look of the real Macbook Pro, to make it even harder to distinguish between the real and the fake, the company has even gone as far as replacing the original DragonFly logo with Apple’s own ( see image below)

Fake Mac

Unlike the previous versions, clones, DragonFly has made the effort and are now Hackintoshing the notebook in the factory to run Snow Leopard. They have even created a fake MagSafe charger!

While this would be totally unthinkable in the US, in China pirating and cloning products is a ver common business strategy, so we expect that they should be fine. Currently $436 will buy you one on the Beijing electronics blackmarket.

If you are interested in this clone, or simply want to check out their website then check the link here.

Apple Opens Online Store in China

We are sure millions of Chinese Apple lovers will be happy to hear that Apple has finally opened up their Online Store for customers in China. The store will sell all Apple products including the iPhone 4 and iPad, which recently made their way to China.

Apple also announced that an enhanced App Store for China is also now available. This App Store has localized featured apps, sections, and top charts. The updated App Store is also now available in Simplified Chinese for the first time.

For those interested, we have added the Full press release below:

CUPERTINO, California—October 26, 2010—Apple® today introduced the Apple Store® in China (apple.com.cn), the easiest way to shop online for Apple products including the revolutionary iPhone® 4 and the magical iPad™. Apple’s online store in China features free shipping, free personalized engraving on any iPod® or iPad, and the ability to custom configure any Mac® with just a few clicks. The online Apple Store also offers a wide selection of third-party products and is the only place online to buy the iPod nano® (PRODUCT) RED. “We are thrilled to open our newest online store in China,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s COO. “With personalized engraving, configure-to-order options and free shipping on everything, the Apple Store is a great destination for our customers in China.” Just in time for the holiday shopping season, signature gift wrap is available with the purchase of most Apple products including iPod, iPad and iPhone. The online Apple Store also lets eligible students and faculty members take advantage of special education pricing on Apple products. Also starting today, customers in China can access Apple’s legendary App Store℠ in Simplified Chinese, with localized featured apps and charts of the most popular paid and free apps in China. The App Store offers iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users access to the world’s largest catalog of apps with over 300,000 apps in 20 categories including games, business, news, sports, health, reference and travel. Apple designs Macs, the best personal computers in the world, along with OS X, iLife, iWork, and professional software. Apple leads the digital music revolution with its iPods and iTunes online store. Apple is reinventing the mobile phone with its revolutionary iPhone and App Store, and has recently introduced its magical iPad which is defining the future of mobile media and computing devices.