China

Having now read Tim Cook’s letter of apology to Chinese consumers, I think the Apple chief executive has rather deftly achieved his objective – a public act of contrition – without admitting that his company did anything wrong.

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A web games company is about to test the appetite for Chinese floats in the US in one of the first such deals since the accounting scandals that rocked many Chinese companies in 2011.

7Road.com is the games subsidiary of Changyou.com, a Chinese online game developer that in turn is majority-owned by Nasdaq-listed Sohu.com.

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It’s hard to know which was worse: Nokia‘s third quarter overall, or its results in China. Let’s say… China.

Why? Well, the Finnish mobile company has made a big effort in the country, but it’s Q3 results show that it’s far from paying off.

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Common wisdom has it that when it comes to the web, China goes its own way. For big western sites there are China equivalents: for Google, there’s Baidu. For Facebook there’s Renren. For eBay, there’s Alibaba. And for Twitter, there’s Sina Weibo. Isn’t there?

In terms of numbers, yes. China has over 300m users on the Sina Weibo service – Twitter is banned in China. But hang on. According to a recent report, the most active users of Twitter worldwide are in… China. Not the US. How come?

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These are not happy days for Apple in China. The iconic American brand, outpaced by Samsung in its appeal among Chinese consumers since last year, is now also losing out to other smartphone competitors.

According to IDC, Apple’s share of the Chinese smartphone market by shipments fell by nearly half to 10 per cent in the second quarter from three months earlier. The company came fourth in a ranking topped by Samsung and Lenovo, the Chinese company that is also the world’s second-largest PC vendor.

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Richard Waters

Make no mistake: Apple will end up eating the higher costs that supplier Foxconn will incur to end excessive overtime and improve working conditions at its plants. But, as we suggested earlier this year, it will be Apple’s rivals that will end up suffering mostRead more

Tech news from around the web:

China has overtaken the US as the world’s biggest smartphone market by volume in the third quarter, Reuters reports. According to research company Strategy Analytics, smartphone shipments grew 58% to reach 23.9m units in China during the quarter, while US shipments fell 7% from the second quarter to reach 23.3m devices. Read more

Joseph Menn

The two-day London Cyber Conference wrapped up Thursday with a remarkable lack of unity for such a carefully staged, invite-only event for world political and technology leadersRead more

Joseph Menn

Ebay chief executive John Donahoe said the Chinese government  won’t let foreign-owned  internet companies win in that country, but added PayPal will nonetheless bend to fit new rules and stay in the market. Read more

When Robin Li, Baidu’s chief executive, gave an interview to the Financial Times in March, he made some enigmatic remarks, writes Kathrin Hille in Beijing.

Asked about what he intended to do to make sure Baidu, China’s largest online search engine, would not lose out in the rapid rise of the microblogs in China, he said: “Baidu is not in the social media business.” Read more