Though China is the Apple's second largest market it was continuously neglected by the company. Apple's warranty service was very poor in china. And also there were some misunderstandings about warranty policies caused by communication gap. Consequently the consumers of Apple in China were very disappointed as they were not getting enough after sales services compared to other counties. And finally Apple CEO, Tim Cook, apologizes to the Chinese consumers of their products.
Actually, Apple was losing its reputation in China. And its nearest competitor, Samsung, could take the chance. So this apology is being considered as a part of strategy.
The Chinese Government-run media was protesting Apple for more than two weeks. The complaints were about Poor Customer Service and Warranty Policy of Apple in China. Consumers were also dissatisfied with Apple. They want Apple to improve the service quality in China. The Chinese Government is also trying to implement a new law to regulate the foreign handset manufacturers.
The Apple CEO, Tim Cook, also reacted accordingly. He signed a letter by apologizing to the consumer with a promise to change the customer service policy and warranty service.
Some important parts of the letter are mentioned here:
"We are aware that a lack of communications . . . led to the perception that Apple is arrogant and doesn't care or attach enough importance to consumer feedback."
Mr. Cook also said, according to the letter- "We express our sincere apologies for any concerns or misunderstandings this gave consumers."
China has been a vital consumer market for Apple. Last year, the sales volume in china reached $23.8 billion representing its 15% total revenue. More importantly, China is now the world's biggest market for smart phone manufacturer. In this situation, if Apple doesn't take necessary actions to the consumer feedback definitely Samsung will capture the market share. So, Apple can't avoid the demand of Chinese consumers.
Apple should also consider the emotional aspects. Few years ago a Chinese boy who didn't have the enough money to purchase an iPhone and he sold his Kidney to purchase it! Sometimes newspaper reported that people is selling their blood to buy iPhone. These all prove that Chinese really like Apple.
There are rational aspects too. Apple have their factory in china. As a local people Chinese can expect some facilities. But they feel they are being discriminated by Apple!
So, as soon as possible, Apple should fix these sensitive issues in order to keep their position as a market leader. Once they are out of the track, it will be really hard for them to get back to the position.