Steve Jobs. Who?

Updated: 2011-08-28 08:02

By Gan Tian (China Daily)

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Steve Jobs. Who?

While there are 40 millions hits on Google if you do a web search on "Steve Jobs", not many in China recognize that name, although Apple products are flying off the shelves. Gan Tian finds out more.

They are lighting candles to keep a vigil for Steve Jobs' health in California, and Apple stocks dropped with the news that the founder of Apple has resigned from the company. But in China, it's the products, not the man that is first in consumer consciousness. China Daily visited the Apple store in Beijing's Sanlitun, and asked several young Apple fans if they were disappointed with Steve Job's decision to leave the company. "No", they said, but they all vowed that they would still be buying any new products with the apple icon.

Like many Chinese fans, 27-year-old office worker Zhang Wei thinks "Steve Jobs" and "Tim Cook" are merely names that belong in geek jargon. For Zhang, his introduction to the iPod Mini he bought in 2004 was not through any Apple advertisement but through an episode of Desperate Housewives. In one scene, Zhang saw Gabrielle Solis jogging with a beautiful pink iPod Mini.

He was so taken with it that he immediately went to Beijing's Zhongguancun and searched and found a blue iPod Mini. It cost him 2,400 yuan. In 2006, after he graduated and got a job. That was Zhang saw the Apple laptop that Miranda Priestly was using in The Devil Wears Prada.

"The sleek, silver Macbook Pro caught my attention at once," Zhang says.

If it was the design of the Apple products that spurred Zhang's interest, it is more the powerful functions of Apple's operating system that appeals to freelance graphic designer, Wang Li.

"The Mac system is amazing. It has the easiest instructions and gives you the results you want," Wang says. His Apple collection now includes an iMac, a MacBook pro, an iPad, and an iPhone 4.

"I am waiting for iPhone 5 to launch. Half a month to go," he says eagerly.

When the first Apple Store opened in Sanlitun, Zhou Yiying, an IT editor, was queuing in front of the store overnight with his friends. He had bought his first iPhone in 2008, but from Hong Kong, since it was not available on the mainland,

These days, Zhou visits the Apple store regularly, and to him, the place is like a shrine to good design.

"It is the coolest place in town, always packed with the open-minded and trendy. It's all about the atmosphere."

So while young Chinese are not as bothered about who the face behind the product is, they are certainly giving Steve Jobs the best adulation he deserves - they believe in his products.

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