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Apple Inc Starts Year 2014 in China with Tmall Store Opening

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By Reissa Su | January 9, 2014 7:30 PM EST

Apple Inc makes another move to get closer to Chinese consumers with the opening of its official store on Tmall, a popular online marketplace owned by Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba. Tmall was launched in 2008 with 70,000 merchants and brands on board which included Gap Inc and Nike Inc.

Reuters
A man talks on an iPhone in Beijing in this July 24, 2013 file photo. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon

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According to Bloomberg, Apple Inc will soon open another store in mainland China. Apple CEO Tim Cook is planning to open 22 retail stores in greater China. The new store will be Apple's 10th in the mainland with 3 more stores in Hong Kong.

Apple is already serving customers in its online store in China but Tmall will give the company an additional opportunity to bring its products to China's online-shopping population. The Wall Street Journal reported that China will soon overtake United States as the biggest market for e-commerce in the world.

Another major online shopping site in China is Taobao which Alibaba also owns. The site offers consumers products with low prices and special deals. Taobao has 800 million product listings with 7 million merchants. Since Apple has entered Tmall, it hopes to attract China's lucrative online marketplace.

iOS vs Android adoption rate

With the China Mobile deal in place, analysts expect the iOS to be well-received by Apple fans in the country. Apple Inc's iOS7 now runs on 78 per cent of iPhones, iPod touch and iPads based on official data on the company's latest mobile OS version. The number of devices running on iOS7 has increased from 74% earlier in Dec. 2012.

Since iOS7 already has the greater share of Apple mobile devices, iOS6 continues to run on 18 per cent of iPhones, iPads and iPod touch. The increase in iOS7 usage came from iOS6 users deciding to switch to iOS7 on their devices.

The latest Apple OS was only released for public download in the middle of September. The latest figures reaffirm the quick adoption rate of Apple Inc's latest operating system.

Apple OS rival Android pales in comparison with Android 4.4 KitKat running in only 1.1 per cent of total active Android devices. Google has not updated its Android statistics since Dec. 2. A greater percentage of Android users still use the Jelly Bean version of Android while 24 per cent use devices that run on Gingerbread, an old Android OS released in 2011.

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(Photo: Reuters / )
A man talks on an iPhone in Beijing in this July 24, 2013 file photo. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon
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