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It's not just counterfeit iPads and iPhones that turn up in China. There are knockoff Apple Stores as well. The anonymous writer behind the BirdAbroad blog ran into a fake Apple Retail Store -- complete with wood floors, blue t-shirts and lanyards -- in Kunming, China.

It’s an Apple store!

Or is it?

RP and I went inside and poked around. They looked like Apple products. It looked like an Apple store. It had the classic Apple store winding staircase and weird upstairs sitting area. The employees were even wearing those blue t-shirts with the chunky Apple name tags around their necks...

Being the curious types that we are, we struck up some conversation with these salespeople who, hand to God, all genuinely think they work for Apple. I tried to imagine the training that they went to when they were hired, in which they were pitched some big speech about how they were working for this innovative, global company – when really they’re just filling the pockets of some shyster living in a prefab mansion outside the city by standing around a fake store disinterestedly selling what may or may not be actual Apple products that fell off the back of a truck somewhere.

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The full blog post is a great read, with many details about the fake stores (plural!) she ran into. Her post has been covered extensively, but Apple has declined to comment about the fake stores.

Top Rated Comments

Deedolito Avatar
127 months ago
Comments like "ooh it's a different culture...who can blame them" make me sick. Been over there and they know exactly what they are doing.

This is so lame... hope they get shut down ASAP.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Zubba Avatar
127 months ago
Only western vanity makes it wrong in any way.

It's a different culture with different values, and one I respect more than our own faux democracy.

It's wrong in every way. Since you obviously can't understand the concept of why that is, I'll explain in as simple a terms as can be mustered. The idea of intellectual property has been the foundation that provides us with the impetus to develop new technologies and advancements. If a business can't reap the rewards of its research, there is less of an incentive to develop anything new. The system has been the reason why we've seen an explosion of discoveries and innovations over the last two hundred years.

Before you go off and espouse some sort of moral high ground with a love for Chinese culture, consider the fact that nearly all the significant innovations of the modern world have been developed in the west, under cultures that value the idea of intellectual property.

China's great contribution to modern man has been cheap labor and a new twist on totalitarianism. Here's hoping they can learn to appreciate the value of intellectual property, and actually contribute to the spirit of innovation instead of being limited to the reproduction of the ideas of another.
Score: 7 Votes (Like | Disagree)
alphaod Avatar
127 months ago
All Apple needs to do is take ownership, add some iPad displays, and change the sign to a silver background.

Isn't that great? No cost of construction, furnishing, hiring. All paid for.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
spillproof Avatar
127 months ago
Too bad Apple doesn't actually write "Apple Store" on their signs.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
yauzers619 Avatar
127 months ago
A copy that just isn't right. This is how I feel about a lot if things in China.

The new Chinese stealth fighter http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacific-12266973.

All the wares (DVDs, spoof luxary items) you see walking through Shenzen.

The day that China truely innovates, is the day we are really in trouble.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
hajime Avatar
127 months ago
Do they have the fake version of the latest MBA running Lion as well?
Do they accept counterfeit bills or credit cards?
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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