Apple has enjoyed its share of good times and bad times over the past year. A highlight in the company’s career was momentarily passing oil giant Exxon to become the most valuable company on the planet. Even though this success didn’t last long (Exxon took back its prized place by the end of the day’s trading), Apple is still one of the most powerful companies on earth.
With power comes responsibility, and sometimes that responsibility requires cracking down on fraudulent Apple retailers. Apple has been trying to shut down counterfeit stores in China, and now the company is taking a swing at knock-off sellers in New York City. In a recent court battle, Apple won against a NYC businessman hawking Apple goods.
Why Apple Needs to Shut Down These Markets
There are many reasons why Apple should shut down knock-off vendors. Aside from the fact that Apple loses money every time a counterfeit item is sold, the company can’t validate or warranty any product not sold inside an Apple store. When people purchase knock-off or black market devices, these products may not work. This, in turn, gives Apple a bad name.
Of course, it’s impossible to ignore the fact that Apple loses money when black market dealers sell stolen or refurbished goods. Every time a fake Apple store goes up in China, for example, Apple loses credibility with Chinese consumers (a viable and vibrant market). Even though Apple hasn’t gained much headway in China, the company refuses to allow street vendors to sell devices bearing the Apple logo in the United States.
Apple has asked a New York court for the names and address of people who have purchased counterfeit goods on NYC streets. Many street vendors keep this information, and Apple wants to find out who’s buying these goods. Apple also wants to know which businesses have been buying counterfeit Apple products.
A NYC judge granted Apple permission to view these telling documents, and the company aims to crack-down on all counterfeit sales. This means that a few businesses in the NYC area will soon be out of Apple stock – fake or otherwise. If products and devices were not purchased through Apple, businesses can forget about making a profit from these items.
On the Consumer Front
For the most part, consumers are in support of Apple’s court battles. After all, any consumer who shells out top dollar for Apple devices is bound to be upset when someone buys the same product for less on the street. Further, many people may be unaware that the Apple product purchased was counterfeit. If a consumer purchased an Apple device from a store selling fake products, this is hard to detect. Apple aims to put a stop to all of these sales, so that consumers are protected from throwing away money.
As for the China battle, Apple is still working on shutting down the many fake Apple stores that have popped up all over the country. At least, for now, Apple has won its battle within NYC, and that is a definite start.