China has decided to ban government officials from using iPhones and other foreign-branded devices for work purposes, including preventing them from bringing them to the office. The directive, writes the Wall Street Journal on the basis of sources close to the dossier, is the latest step in Beijing’s campaign to reduce dependence on foreign technology and to improve internal IT security. The move, however, could jeopardize the Cupertino-based company’s success in China where it dominates the high-end smartphone market. In recent weeks, employees have received instructions to do so from their superiors in chat groups or workplace meetings, the sources said.
A risk to Apple’s success in China
The new directive comes in the context of a campaign to limit the flow of sensitive information outside China’s borders. Beijing’s move could have a deterrent effect for foreign brands in China, including Apple. Apple dominates the high-end smartphone market in the country and considers China one of its main markets: the People’s Republic represents about 19% of total revenue for the American company.