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Tim Cook meets with UAE prime minister, visits Apple resellers

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
Apple CEO Tim Cook met with UAE Vice-President and Prime Minister Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum on Sunday local time, where the two discussed various topics ranging from the region's burgeoning IT sector to education.

Cook
Apple CEO Tim Cook (left) meets with UAE Prime Minister Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.
Source: Khaleej Times


During the sit-down session, Shaikh Mohammed lauded Apple's role in defining technology-driven education programs around the world, while Cook commended the UAE for its rollout of "e-government" programs, the Khaleej Times reported.

Details of the meeting are unknown, though some speculate Apple is in talks to supply the country with devices for education initiatives. The move would be similar to a rumored Turkish deal that could see the purchase of as many as 13.1 million iPads worth between $3 billion and $4 billion over a four-year period.

While in the region, Cook visited official Apple resellers like the Virgin Megastore in Abu Dhabi and Jacky's Electronics in Dubai, reports tbreak.ae. The total number of outlets visited is unknown, but employees from multiple stores posted photos of Cook appearances to Twitter.

As Apple lacks an official retail presence in the Emirates, Cook's tour of the country sparked rumors that the company may be scouting locations for a future flagship Apple Store. One possibility would be the Burj Khalifa -- the world's tallest building -- where the Apple chief was spotted on Sunday.

Counting Shaikh Mohammed, Cook has met with two heads of state in as many days. On Friday, the Apple chief discussed taxes and future regional operations with Ireland's Taoiseach Enda Kenny.
post #2 of 18
More likely the store would be in the Dubai Mall, adjacent to the Burj Khalifa
post #3 of 18
Enda Kenny is Ireland's Head of Government, not Head of State.
post #4 of 18
OMG there going to sell 4b worth of ipad!! mayor sell of tomorrow
post #5 of 18

The UAE... where VOIP services such as FaceTime, Skype, Viber.. etc are blocked by the government!


Edited by NasserAE - 2/2/14 at 7:45pm
post #6 of 18

Definitely not a fan of those sorts of countries, but as long as Apple sells more gadgets and rakes in more dough, then I guess that I approve. 

post #7 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by NasserAE View Post

The UAE... where VOIP services such as FaceTime, Skype, Viber.. etc are blocked by the government!
Really? They even banned FaceTime?
I hope Tim sorted them out at his meeting.

I have never been to the UAE. Would using a good VPN get around this?

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post #8 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by lostkiwi View Post
I hope Tim sorted them out at his meeting.

 

They're not too fond of gay people (homosexuality is illegal, your ass will end up in jail or worse), so I kind of doubt that Tim Cook sorted anything out in those kind of countries.:lol:

 

Also, wife beating is legal, as long as you don't leave any marks. :lol:

 

Apple has been talking a lot recently about equal rights, anti-discrimination bills etc., so Tim Cook sure found a fine place to visit.:lol:

post #9 of 18

There is a lot of disinformation and ignorance with respect to the UAE (wife beating... ) but it's fair to say there remains a lot to 'fix' as well. The UAE PM got quite a grilling from a BBC reporter recently on those 'to-do' items...

 

But as a Brit ex-pat living in the UAE I can recommend the experience if you get the right job out here...

 

Anyway... Facetime used to work fine back in 2012 but now... nope. Apple iOS devices acquired out here do NOT enable Facetime at all.

 

iMessaging works... sometimes. Oddly, if I message my son in the UK the msg delivery is pretty much instant and always works. Try the same with my wife and well... sometimes the message seems to get lost... By contrast BBM works fine. Always.

 

Skype is heavily used here even though it is technically illegal to do so. The UAE's telecomms laws are, um, interesting. Even so with something like 80% of population ex-pat and most of those from Asia (India, etc.), Skype is a central mechanism for staying in touch with friends and family.

 

Of course you cant actually get to the skype website to download it so hello VPN. Most people here use a VPN service...

 

I hope Apple open some stores here. They are long overdue but perhaps some of these issues such as no Facetime on iOS devices are a roadblock...?


Edited by dagazmcl - 2/2/14 at 9:45pm
post #10 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by emerica View Post


What the hell are you talking about? That wasn't even funny you moron

 

Who are you calling a moron? You're obviously an ignoramus.

 

Homosexual relationships are illegal: article 80 of the Abu Dhabi Penal Code makes sodomy punishable with imprisonment of up to 14 years, while article 177 of the Penal Code of Dubai imposes imprisonment of up to 10 years on consensual sodomy.:lol:

 

The Federal Supreme Court ruled that wife beating is not illegal, as long as it leaves no physical marks on the victim.[66:lol:

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Arab_Emirates

 

I'd love to chat with you some more, but I'm off to beat up my wife right now, before I make my nightly rounds as a member of the moral police. I hunt for gay people and women who aren't covered head to toe in tents and bed sheets.

post #11 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by dagazmcl View Post
 

There is a lot of disinformation and ignorance with respect to the UAE (wife beating... ) but it's fair to say there remains a lot to 'fix' as well. The UAE PM got quite a grilling from a BBC reporter recently on those 'to-do' items...

 

But as a Brit ex-pat living in the UAE I can recommend the experience if you get the right job out here...

 

Anyway... Facetime used to work fine back in 2012 but now... nope. Apple iOS devices acquired out here do NOT enable Facetime at all.

 

iMessaging works... sometimes. Oddly, if I message my son in the UK the msg delivery is pretty much instant and always works. Try the same with my wife and well... sometimes the message seems to get lost... By contrast BBM works fine. Always.

 

Skype is heavily used here even though it is technically illegal to do so. The UAE's telecomms laws are, um, interesting. Even so with something like 80% of population ex-pat and most of those from Asia (India, etc.), Skype is a central mechanism for staying in touch with friends and family.

 

Of course you cant actually get to the skype website to download it so hello VPN. Most people here use a VPN service...

 

I hope Apple open some stores here. They are long overdue but perhaps some of these issues such as no Facetime on iOS devices are a roadblock...?

Thanks for the detailed answer.  They probably don't enforce the anti Skype rule as they must have the master private keys from Microsoft so they can read everything anyways.  I imagine they keep the rule on the books just for appearances sake.

 

I would imagine that the block on FaceTime would have come up in Tim's meeting.  Let's hope you can use it soon!

Save your friends from Skynet - whoops, Google.  Recommend they use StartPage for search..

...and no, I am not paid to say this..

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post #12 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by lostkiwi View Post
 

Thanks for the detailed answer.  They probably don't enforce the anti Skype rule as they must have the master private keys from Microsoft so they can read everything anyways.  I imagine they keep the rule on the books just for appearances sake.

 

I would imagine that the block on FaceTime would have come up in Tim's meeting.  Let's hope you can use it soon!

 

My brother in law lives in UAE. The only way to call him using Skype/FaceTime is by going through VPN from his end. It is enforced.

post #13 of 18

With that level of censorship he was probably asking Tim about a censored App Store, as a precondition of doing business there.

post #14 of 18

Yeah rumour has it they monitor most things here. They dont do that kind of monitoring in the West. Right? :-P

post #15 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by NasserAE View Post
 

 

My brother in law lives in UAE. The only way to call him using Skype/FaceTime is by going through VPN from his end. It is enforced.


We dont have to use VPN to use Skype. Only to download it.

 

Actually,,, we dont need Skype for the updates either... now that I think of it.

 

Doesnt surprise me there is variance across the UAE!

 

I am speaking about Etisalat/Abu Dhabi. YMMV.

post #16 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by dagazmcl View Post
 

Yeah rumour has it they monitor most things here. They dont do that kind of monitoring in the West. Right? :-P

I don't think the US Government can censor apps (that would go against the First Amendment), but Apple themselves can and do (for example there is no pornography allowed on the App Store).

post #17 of 18

Apple naturally goes where the money is.Why not the Philippines I wonder?

post #18 of 18
Apple is a business essentially so they will sell devices where there is a demand. Saying Tim Cook should not visit a country because homosexuality is not legal and wife beating is - that is besides the point. Not to say these issues are not serious, but Tim is there on a business call, not to discuss politics.

Skype, Facebook, Google and a bunch of stuff are also not legal in China, Apple still sells lot of devices there though.

Being gay and being Chinese (though fortunately I live in Hong Kong,) I will just say, if there is a will there is a way. Firewall haven't stopped me from accessing the internet, all you need is a few tricks and a good VPN provider.
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