A growing political scandal in Turkey threatens to involve the country’s prime minister, a key player in a program to purchase $4 billion worth of iPads for thousands of schools, which in turn was a major motive for Apple’s plans to open a retail store in the country early next year. Three ministers resigned Christmas night in the face of corruption allegations unrelated to Apple, and they called on prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan to also resign. If Erdogan does leave office, it could put the iPad deal in jeopardy, and leave the nearly-finished and high-profile Apple store with vastly fewer customers. It was Erdogan who visited Apple’s headquarters last year, reportedly to negotiate the purchase of 12 million iPads for the country’s schools. It’s believed that as part of the iPad purchase agreement, the company also agreed to open a retail store in Istanbul, despite the country’s minuscule market share for Apple products. CEO Tim Cook will reportedly fly to Turkey next February to finalize the iPad deal with Turkish officials. According to research by StatCounter, Apple’s desktop operating systems are used on just .86 percent of Turkey’s computers, the lowest among all current and potential retail store countries. The OS market share figure is significant, because it indicates how many potential store customers there are within a country. The United States has a 13.7 percent OS share, while Switzerland leads the list of store countries with a 21.2 percent share.
According to StatCounter’s research, most European countries have a six percent share for Apple’s desktop OS, while most Asia countries report two to three percent market shares. Singapore stands out in Asia, however, with a 14.5 percent Apple OS market share.
Among the less likely countries for any Apple store, all rank higher than Turkey. Hungary and Poland have a six percent share, while Jordan and Greece have two percent shares. Argentina and South Korea have one percent shares of Apple’s OS.
Despite their large acceptance of technology, Taiwan and South Korea rank very low for Apple OS share. At the other end of the chart, Denmark, New Zealand and Norway have largely adopted Macs but have no Apple stores.
Besides Turkey, Apple also plans to open a store in Brazil, which ranks low for OS adoption.
The chart below shows the ranking of all 13 current Apple retail store countries (plus Hong Kong), and all the logical, potential countries for future stores. Six of the top 10 ranking countries already have retail stores. Understandably, just one of the bottom 22 countries has an Apple store (China). China ranks next-to-last on the chart, but its stores can be explained by the need for a physical and brand presence in a country with enormous revenue growth potential. With less than eight percent of China’s population, Turkey does not have that same revenue potential.
In the chart the blue bars indicate existing store countries, and the red bars indicate potential store countries. Click on the chart for a larger view.
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