Chinese government workers banned from using iPhones | Cult of Mac

Chinese government workers banned from using iPhones


A new wave of lockdowns in China could put Apple millions of units behind on iPhone production.
No iPhone for you, Chinese's government workers.
Illustration: Cult of Mac

Apple has been caught in the middle of the high tech trade war between the United States and China. Many government employees have been ordered to not use an iPhone for work. Official government disapproval could result in lowered sales in the country, which currently contributes heavily to Apple revenue.

iPhone has not been singled out, though. The workers are not allowed to use any smartphone made outside of China.

United States vs. China with iPhone in the middle

The Biden administration has taken multiple steps to limit China’s access to cutting-edge technology. That includes cutting off access to advanced computer chips. China’s response is to make its high-tech industries less dependent on foreign companies. That includes Apple.

“China ordered officials at central government agencies not to use Apple’s iPhones and other foreign-branded devices for work or bring them into the office,” reports the Wall Street Journal on Wednesday.

Some government employees had already been banned from using iPhones, but the order has been expanded to more agencies.

Potentially horrible news for Apple

While the ban technically only affects a relatively small percentage of the Chinese population, it signals that China’s government disapproves of smartphones made outside of the country. That could lower iPhone sales by all citizens.

That’s a serious blow for Apple. It’s been looking to China as a source of revenue growth. And it pulled in $15.5 billion from the country in 2022 — that’s 17% of the total.

Also, many Apple computers are assembled in China. Whether government suspicion of the products will someday change this is anyone’s guess. There are alternatives: iPhone 15 is also assembled in India.


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