Faking Apple products is nothing new in China, the world leader in counterfeited goods. But according to a blogger in Kunming, the capital of Yunnan province, some bright spark’s gone a little further.
Birdabroad reports that on a recent stroll downtown she was surprised and pleased to see that an Apple store had opened up, offering all the products you’d expect.
“They looked like Apple products. It looked like an Apple store. It had the classic Apple store winding staircase and weird upstairs sitting area. The employees were even wearing those blue T-shirts with the chunky Apple name tags around their necks,” she says.
But on closer inspection, things just didn’t stack up. Whereas the real stores just have the Apple logo on their signs, this one had the name too. And the sales assistants’ badges lacked their names, just showing the logo and the word ‘staff’.
The building quality wasn’t that hot, with badly-painted walls and a rickety staircase.
Rather sweetly, says Birdabroad, all the staff appeared to think that they did actually work for Apple.
“I tried to imagine the training that they went to when they were hired, in which they were pitched some big speech about how they were working for this innovative, global company – when really they’re just filling the pockets of some shyster living in a prefab mansion outside the city by standing around a fake store disinterestedly selling what may or may not be actual Apple products that fell off the back of a truck somewhere,” says Birdabroad.
Five days later, she says, she went back for another look – and discovered the store had disappeared completely.