Republican lawmakers flame Apple for censorship in China

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China’s population of 1.4 billion makes it a huge potential market for Apple.
China’s population of 1.4 billion makes it a huge potential market for Apple.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

A pair of GOP congresspeople have strongly criticized the decision to remove songs from artists critical of the Chinese Communist Party from Apple’s streaming music service in that country.

The move highlights the compromises the iPhone maker has to make in order to offer its products in a very lucrative market.

China Warms Back Up To Apple After Tim Cook’s Public Apology

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Apple is ready to explode in China. Photo: Apple
Apple is ready to explode in China. Photo: Apple

In China, the state-run press has been attacking Apple non-stop for the past couple of weeks over warranty policies that showed the company’s “unparalleled arrogance.” Apple Stores were fixing broken iPhone returns instead of replacing the devices entirely like they do in the United States. There was also an issue with Apple’s 90-day warranty on replaced parts not matching China’s mandatory one-year warranty policy.

Things got so heated that Apple CEO Tim Cook had to issue a public letter to Chinese customers apologizing “for any concerns or misunderstandings.” Apple’s scrutinized warranty and return policies have also been changed to address the concerns.

After the apology, China is starting to warm back up to Apple.

Forget The iPad, Comrade! Here’s The $1,600 Red Pad, Endorsed By The Chinese Communist Party

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crt_redpad_G_20120117082506

Back in 2004, I couldn’t afford $499 for an iPod, so instead I got a 20GB Dell DJ for $299. Honestly, it wasn’t a bad little MP3 player, but it looked like it had been designed by some sort of extraordinary, irradiated orangutan toiling away in the bowels of the Kremlin during the Soviet electronics revolution of the late 1980s. I realize that analogy doesn’t make any sense, but just look at the design and button placement on this thing, and all will become clear.

My DJ lasted me quite a few years, but when I finally upgraded to an 80GB iPod Classic in 2006, I breathed a sigh of relief. The lesson? Accept no substitutes.

On that note, here’s the latest bizarre Communist clone of a popular Apple gadget: the Red Pad, named after the only book a loyal Maoist ever needed in the 1960s-era Chinese Communist Party, his Little Red Book. It looks just like an iPad, but it’s tailored specifically to run apps compatible with China’s massive state propaganda machine. Oh, and it costs twice as much as an iPad 2!

The only problem? After poor reviews, the Chinese government has wiped out all mention of its existence.