An Apple Store is under investigation about racial discrimination by the New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo after an assemblywoman last month complained that her constituents, from a Chinese–American neighbourhood, were being asked unusual questions by employees. The complaints gained press attention last month.
It has been revealed by Cuomo communications (Cuomonications?) director Richard Bamberger that it is looking into the matter. An email said: “Our Office received complaints over the treatment of certain individuals of Asian descent at two Apple stores in New York City … We contacted Apple and it has been very cooperative during our inquiry.”
It is thought that the concerns over discrimination come from fears of smuggled iPads – the kit was on lockdown in the States, where it was first available, until a wider launch. It’s thought that a questionnaire was given for use in iPad sales to block “illegal exports”, which we can assume means taking an iPad to China to look at its innards.
A source apparently said the policy is no longer in place, reports Politico, but since the iPad is now available in so many more regions globally this isn’t entirely surprising – it would have little to gain from a lockdown now.
Apple is very clear about reserving its right to refuse service to anyone, especially if they are waving around cold, hard, cash, but to put added pressure on a certain minority is illegal across the US.