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First Apple Store in Central China Opens

According to a new report from China, Apple has opened a new store in Henan province, its first in central China, bringing the number of Apple stores in mainland China to thirteen.


The new store, which opened Saturday in a shopping mall in downtown Zhengzhou, the provincial capital, marked an important step on the layout of Apple's retail chains in China, as the city is also home to Foxconn, an Apple production facility and Apple's main supplier. The current Zhengzhou plant hires 300,000 workers, with three new Foxconn workshops for Apple under construction.


According to the report, Apple will take advantage from this shorter and more convenient logistic channel, according to market observers, and Henan, with a population of more than 94 million, is no doubt a tempting market. That's about three times the population of Canada.


Earlier this month, a report from investment banking firm UBS showed strong demand for Apple's latest iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 plus smartphones had helped the Chinese market outsell the United States for the first time.


Apple's iPhone demand saw outsized growth in China and China could constitute as much as 35% of shipments in the last quarter of 2014, higher than the 24% ratio of the US market. During the same period last year, China's market share was 22%, said the report.


Apple CEO Tim Cook said during a trip to China in October that "it's just a matter of time" before China "becomes Apple's biggest revenue contributor". Cook also said Apple would increase its number of Apple stores in China, ranging from 15 to 40 in the next few years.


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