Microsoft Requires All Employees to Use iPhones

Written by Camilla Jessen

Jul.10 - 2024 8:21 PM CET

Microsoft has mandated that all employees in China switch to iPhones for enhanced security, starting from September 2024.

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Microsoft has decided that all employees in China must switch to iPhones, primarily for security reasons.

According to an internal memo seen by Bloomberg, employees currently using Android devices, including Chinese brands such as Huawei and Xiaomi, will need to transition to the iPhone 15.

It's quite a shift that Microsoft is making.

One of the main reasons for this change is the absence of the Google Play Store in China.

Android users in the country have had to rely on app platforms from Huawei or Xiaomi, which Microsoft now deems incompatible with its security protocols.

By requiring the use of iPhones, which can access Apple’s App Store in China, Microsoft ensures that employees can securely use essential applications like Microsoft Authenticator and Identity Pass.

The move to iPhones is intended to block access to less secure platforms and provide a unified, secure environment for all employees.

Microsoft’s Presence in China

Microsoft has been operating in China since 1992 and runs its largest research center outside the US there, employing over 6,000 engineers and researchers.

In May 2024, the Wall Street Journal reported that Microsoft had asked about 800 local employees to consider relocating to other countries, including the United States.

This decision comes amidst heightened concerns about cybersecurity and data protection.

Notably, China has previously banned iPhones among government employees, making Microsoft’s decision to require iPhones even more interesting.