A smartphone for Putin

When Vladimir Putin went on an official visit to China earlier this month, brought as a gift to the Chinese leader Ji Xinping a cellphone. Give a mobile to a Chinese might seem like offer an icecream to an Eskimo. But Putin’s one is not an ordinary smartphone, is the Russian answer to Apple, Samsung & co.

 Photo: LinkTV

It’s called Yotaphone and is already in its second generation, because the first did not go very well. It is said that when he was given one to Dimitri Medvedev, famous for being a fan of the iPhone, he had said “At Apple will be nervous.” But it is unclear whether his was a wisecrack. It was only a year ago, yet it seems a century has passed. The West had not returned to be the enemy number one, the syndrome of encirclement was not at dangerous levels like now and no one even dreamed of smashing iPad and iPhone with a hammer just because they are American products. Today the symbolic and political value of a smartphone “sdelano v Rossii” (do not call it “made in Russia”) is even higher. For a country under sactions largely dependent on natural resources, without light industry and no real advanced services – but not second to other in technology – is almost a duty to show it can manage without the others. That is why Putin put it in his suitcase for China.

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