Chinese College Students Will Suffer Humiliation if They Don’t Own “Apple 3-Piece Set”


Electronic products are a must for new generation of college students in China. Stores across China have seen a rush to buy the gadgets in the run-up to the new school year, particularly among college students.

An incident has happened in one of the Apple authorised reseller shop in Beijing last month, a freshmen made a fuss demanding to her parents, insisted on buying an iPhone 4S, new iPad, and Macbook which cost over 20,000 yuan (US$3,129). The three i-products are described as “Apple 3-Piece Set”in China retails market. The girl said to her parent, “if you don’t buy me these, just go ahead and let me lose face in college”. Her mother was in tears because she couldn’t afford the luxury Apple products …

Freshmen have been arriving at Chinese universities one after another, quite a lot of them have been acquiring electronic gadget for their upcoming college life. Sales of laptops have seen the biggest increase during the new school year, with prices of bestsellers ranging from 2,500 to 4,000 yuan (US$391 toUS$625). The best-selling cellphones are under 2,000 yuan, but iPhones have seen decent sales too. 70 percent of freshmen spent a total of 10,000 to 20,000 yuan (US$1,564 to US$3,129) on gadgets for school. The average spending on supplies by new students has risen over the past three years. But some of the costs are not necessary, such as expensive smartphones. Most Chinese students buy such products are not for study but for entertainment.

Such spending has highlighted the wealth gap that exists between college students, and the jealousy it can produce. A freshman at Central China Normal University threatened to drop out unless her parents bought her an iPhone 4S. In China, the phrase ‘Lose face’, can be expressed in English as ‘to suffer public disgrace’, which means ‘be humiliated’. Chinese parents have spared no expense to make sure their kids wont ‘lose face’ in college, by purchasing high-tech gadgets to help them get into the new campus life with superiority. We are discouraging this kind of unhealthy social trend, Chinese parents are spoiling their kids and this might be the reason for the Cupertino to continue making big money in China.

SOURCE: CHINADAILY, BJWB (Chinese translated)