Scott Testa spent a good part of 2011 and 2012 visiting universities and high schools in Zhenghou, China on behalf of China Hope Project. His mission was to act as evangelist for U.S. education and technology.
In that role Testa couldn’t help but notice what type of mobile devices the students sported – invariably they would be handsets made by Asian manufacturers. Once in a blue moon, he tells me, he saw an iPhone. It’s not that students didn’t like Apple products, Testa says—they just couldn’t afford them.
(As a completely unrelated but very interesting side note, Zhenghou is also home to the Foxconn manufacturing facility that makes Apple iPhone 5 devices, a factory that experienced a lot of labor unrest in recent years. In other words, Zhenghou residents can make the devices but apparently can’t afford them).
“My experience was that Apple was viewed as a highly desired brand by Chinese students but it was out of reach for a lot of them,” Testa says.
Apple is trying to remedy that with a new installment payment plan it has introduced in China for buyers of iPhones and MacBook laptops, Bloomberg‘s BusinessWeek reports. It is offering such terms as $48 monthly payments spread out over two years in order to better compete with low-cost devices on the market.
- Former CEO John Sculley Says Apple Needs Cheaper iPhone For Emerging Markets (appadvice.com)
- Apple courts Chinese customers with new interest-free payment plans (thenextweb.com)
- Apple’s Chinese Web Store Adds Credit Facility As iPhone-Maker Battles Cheap Androids (techcrunch.com)