Apple opens store on China’s WeChat platform

Apple opens store on China’s WeChat platform

Tech News

Apple has opened a store on Tencent’s WeChat social media platform, marking an expansion of the U.S. firm’s retail channels in the world’s second largest economy.

The announcement was made by WeChat – China’s dominant messaging app. The company said that the store will allow users to buy Apple products including iPhones, iPads and Macs from the store.

As reported by Reuters, the move by Apple comes as Chinese consumers increasingly turn to social media platforms such as WeChat and ByteDance’s Douyin, the Chinese version of TikTok, to shop.

Besides its own stores and website, Apple already operates a shop on Alibaba Group’s Tmall online marketplace. Apple also tried marketing its products on a livestream in China for the first time in May with an hour-long show.

China’s smartphone sales in the first quarter fell 5% year on year, marking the lowest first-quarter sales figure for the country since 2014, according to data from Counterpoint Research.

However, during the quarter Apple recorded a 19.9% share of the Chinese smartphone market – its biggest since 2014 – as it increased sales by 6% year-on-year in a declining market, the research firm said.

Last month, a U.S. judge has rejected Apple’s bid to throw out a class-action lawsuit that accused Chief Executive Tim Cook of defrauding shareholders by concealing falling demand for iPhones in China.

U.S. District Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers’ decision cleared the way for shareholders led by a British pension fund to sue over a one-day plunge that wiped out $74 billion of Apple’s market value.

The lawsuit stemmed from Cook’s comment on a Nov. 1, 2018, analyst call that while Apple faced sales pressure in markets such as Brazil, India, Russia and Turkey, where currencies had weakened, “I would not put China in that category.”

Apple told suppliers a few days later to curb production, and on Jan. 2, 2019, unexpectedly slashed its quarterly revenue forecast by up to $9 billion, blaming U.S.-China trade tensions.


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Updated: 11 Jul 2023, 03:21 PM IST

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