Recently, the discovery of illegitimate Apple stores in several Chinese cities sparked controversy both in China and the U.S. The fake Apple store, which was uncovered by the Bird Abroad blog, had similar signage, layout and even salespeople as real Apple stores. However, BirdAbroad picked out several key details not common among true Apple stores and correctly pointed out the stores as fake. The stores claimed to have real Apple products, but were not licensed or operated by the company.
Quickly following the public uproar—which included angry customers storming the stores in question demanding refunds—several of the stores were closed, not for their fraudulent use of the Apple brand, but for the lack of proper business licenses.