Apple CEO Tim Cook will attend China’s state-run internet conference next week. According to The Wall Street Journal, Cook is “the most prominent executive from a U.S. company” who will be in attendance…
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The event is regarded as China’s opportunity to present and promote its vision of a regulated cyberspace. The World Internet Conference officially commences next Sunday and is spearheaded by the Cyberspace Administration of China.
Other teach figureheads in attendance include Google’s Sundar Pichai, Facebook’s VP Vaughan Smith, Allan Blue from Microsoft, and more.
“China’s power will contribute to the governance of the global internet,” Ren Xianliang, the deputy director of the Cyberspace Administration of China, said in a news conference last month. “We will show the world China’s plan of jointly building a cyberspace community that shares a common destiny,” Mr. Ren said.
Cook’s attendance at the event in China comes as Apple works to grow the iPhone’s success in the country, while it also continues fighting increased censorship requests from the local government.
Earlier this year, Apple came under fire for removing a slew of VPN apps from the App Store in China. Cook attributed this decision to Apple being forced to comply with law enforcement in countries where Apple does business:
“We would obviously rather not remove the apps, but like we do in other countries, we follow the law wherever we do business. We strongly believe in participating in markets and bringing benefits to customers.
We’re hopeful that over time the restrictions we are seeing are loosened.”
Meanwhile, the iPhone 8 has reportedly been successful in China, which still represents a huge untapped market for growth. The iPhone 8 drove Apple’s sales in the country up some 40 percent year-over-year. The success of the iPhone X in the country, however, remains to be seen.
As for what is discussed at The World Internet Conference in China this weekend remains to be seen, but we’ll update as we learn. more.