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Beijing says YES, GIVE US the iPHONE 6 even if it spies for the NSA
But are Chinese consumers BUYING it? Hmmm
Beijing has approved the new iPhone 6 for sale after regulators were reassured that the devices contain no backdoors allowing NSA snooping.
The iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus will hit the shelves from 17 October, ending Chinese fanbois' wait to see if the larger iPhone 6 Plus will bend if exposed to the fiery heat of their crotches.
On its website (via Google Translate), the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology said it was satisfied that the devices were not just elaborate ways for spooks to spy on the People's Republic.
In a ruling that might seem a bit rich for the notoriously spy-happy nation, the Ministry warned Chinese folk to "improve awareness in the use of smartphones and pay attention to the protection of personal privacy".
Chinese apparatchiks had several concerns about Apple's "daemons", as Google Translate puts it. Mainly, the Ministry was concerned that Apple support staff could take control of users' systems, which it said presented the risk of "personal privacy leakage". Regulators were also worried that repair staff could snoop through the contents of a borked iPhone whilst they were fixing it.
The Ministry was reassured that Apple is "not allowed to intervene in the absence of any information about the user's consent".
The Ministry also threatened Apple with legal action if it was ever found to be snooping on Chinese citizens.
"The relevant production enterprises should effectively protect the user's right to know, continue to improve the safety level of products, fast response and disposition of security incidents products fulfill their responsibilities to protect the interests of users," it wrote.
Apple flogged some 10 million iPhone 6 and 6 Pluses worldwide in the first weekend of sales, making them the quickest selling Apple gadgets of all time.
However, it seems that grey market sales of smuggled phones are particularly sluggish in China at the moment, which could indicate that consumers are not that interested in owning one (or are waiting for the chance to buy a bona fide locally released mobe).
"iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus customers will have access to high-speed mobile networks from China Mobile, China Telecom and China Unicom," Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook said in a press release.
All of which means that Chinese folk can soon get busy snapping nude selfies and uploading them to iCloud without the worry of seeing them splashed over the internet. Can't they? ®