Ever since the US President Donald Trump openly took on China and started a full-fledged trade war between the US and China, Apple remained on tenterhooks as there were fears that the technology giant could end up being the biggest casualty of the trade war. Relations between the US and China have considerably worsened in the backdrop of the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic as the Trump administration has unleashed a slew of punitive actions against the Chinese Communist Party officials. Apple while being an American company, acted as a lapdog of the CCP, is now all set to be kicked out of China in a retaliatory measure by the CCP against Trump’s anti-China measures.
It always hurts when years of loyalty ends up in waste as China has now threatened to boycott iPhones and Apple Products if the US bans ‘WeChat’. China’s foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian tweeted, “If WeChat is banned, then there will be no reason why Chinese shall keep iPhone and apple products.” He also shared a snippet from a press conference where Lijian can be seen accusing the US administration of “piracy” over a ban on the chat app.
Lijian’s warnings have come at a time when Donald Trump has decided to ban TikTok and WeChat from next month onwards as he accused the apps of threatening national security. Trump signed an executive order which blocked all transactions with the Chinese messaging app starting September, thus compelling Google and Apple to remove WeChat from their respective app stores.
Lijian also claimed that a Weibo survey showed that around 95 per cent of respondents would ditch their iPhone if WeChat is added to the US blacklist.
If China goes through with its warning, Apple’s years of unwavering loyalty to the CCP will amount to zilch. It is pertinent to note that, Apple had to reportedly pull out 47,000 apps from the Chinese App Store earlier this month after the CCP regime side-armed the tech behemoth into submission, according to a report in The Verge.
This is not a one-off instance where Apple submitted itself to the demands of the CCP. Last year during the Hong Kong protests, the Silicon Valley-based company had removed the HKMapLive app which was used by protest organizers to track police activity—after the mouthpiece of CCP, Global Times started criticizing the app.
In 2019, Apple had removed the artists and songs that referred to the Tiananmen Square massacre after the Xi Jinping regime ordered it to do so. One of the bands, a Hong Kong duo called Tat Ming Pair, released a Tiananmen tribute called “Remembering is a Crime” which was instantly removed by Apple.
The reason for Apple’s submissive attitude in China is down to the fact that China has a huge market and Apple’s pie is only increasing as the company was the fastest-growing smartphone maker in China in the second quarter as it saw a whopping 225 per cent jump in its sales.
If Apple is banned in China, then it will suffer a lot as 16% of Apple’s global income comes from China. Apple has an 8% share in China’s smartphone market.
While Apple is slated to end up as collateral damage, it is a win-win situation for Trump who, ever since taking over as the US President, had been urging American companies to shift all their bases back to the USA.