|Vittorio Hernandez |||Feb 03, 2015 08:44 AM EST|
(Photo : Reuters) Apple is set to open new stores in China.
Apple has Beijing's crackdown on luxury goods as part of the Chinese government's anti-corruption campaign to thank for its good sales in the fourth quarter of 2014.
China's wealthy people are now giving practical gifts such as mobile phones and watches instead of just 'uber' expensive bags as presents, according to luxury publishing group Hurun Research, reports the Wall Street Journal.
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As a result, the Cupertino-based tech giant sold the most smartphones in China for the last quarter of 2014 and the iPhone has become the most preferred gift items, dislodging bags and other pricey products of brands Louis Vuitton and Hermes.
Samsung, the main competitor of Apple, is also in the top 10 luxury gift brands for the first time as rich Chinese become more interested in consumer electronics. The Seoul-based electronic giant was in 10th place of the Best Brand for Men gifts.
Apple was followed by Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Chanel, Montblanc, Moutai, Hermés, Cartier and Bulgari.
The list for women has similar brands except for Montblanc and Moutai that were replaced by Dior, Tiffany and Giorgio Armani.
Hurun said Apple should expect good sales for the upcoming Chinese New Year, but it noted that rich residents of Central and Western China said they are not Apple fans, and Apple needs to work on changing their outlook to further boost its revenue from China.
Ahead of the Chinese New Year, Apple released a new advertisement in China that features a young woman using her Apple gadget to record an old song for an elderly kin, who in turn, listens to it on an iPad, reports Business Insider.
Nevertheless, Counterpoint Research analyst Neil Shah, who is based in Hong Kong, said Apple's positioning in the mind of Chinese consumers continues to grow stronger.
Apple plans to open 40 more stores in China until end of 2016, but in the coming weeks there are at least five opening. In January, Apple opened a very large store in Hangzhou.
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