October 27, 2010, 12:53 PM

Apple opens an online store for Chinese consumers

The retailer also offers apps in simplified Chinese.

Thad Rueter

Senior Editor

Lead Photo

Apple Inc. this week launched an online store for consumers in China. Apple, No. 4 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, also says that it has begun offering mobile apps in simplified Chinese, the language of mainland China.

Shoppers who make purchases from apple.com/cn receive free shipping and free personalized engraving on iPods and iPads. “With personalized engraving, configured-to-order options and free shipping on everything, the Apple store is a great destination for our customers in China,” says Tim Cook, Apple’s chief operating officer.

Apple’s expansion into China follows other foreign retailers’ efforts to market to China’s 400 million online consumers. Recently, for instance, Goldman Sachs Inc. projected that Amazon.com Inc., No. 1 in the Top 500 Guide, could generate annual web sales from China of $1 billion in 2011, up from $750 million this year.

And earlier this month, Japan's Rakuten, which owns U.S. e-retailer Buy.com, introduced an online shopping site called Lekutian with Baidu Inc., the leading search engine in China. The companies plan to spend $50 million over the next three years to build the e-commerce site.

 

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