Amid the hype of the iPhone 15 launch, a pair of reports over the last week have said that China government agencies have started banning employees from using iPhones. Now, Bloomberg reports that the White House has issued its response to these iPhone bans in China, calling them an “inappropriate retaliation.”
The comments come from John Kirby, the US National Security Council spokesman. These comments mark the first time that the White House has responded to the reports of an iPhone ban in China.
“It seems to be of a piece of the kinds of aggressive and inappropriate retaliation to US companies that we’ve seen from the PRC in the past,” said John Kirby, the council’s spokesman, referring to the People’s Republic of China.
The Wall Street Journal was the first to report that Chinese government agencies had banned the iPhone and other foreign technology devices from being used by employees. Bloomberg subsequently reported that the iPhone ban was set to expand to additional government agencies in the near future.
Earlier today, the Chinese government pushed back against reports that it had banned iPhones from being used by government agencies. It still, however, criticized Apple and said that it is concerned about “a lot of media exposure of security incidents related to Apple’s phones.”
The current state of affairs here seems a bit unclear. Apple has yet to address the reports of an iPhone ban in China, nor did this afternoon’s comments from Kirby acknowledge this morning’s report from the China press briefing.
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