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Steve Jobs remembered in China

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Jeremy Hobson: We’re going to start with Apple’s founder and former CEO Steve Jobs, who died yesterday at the age of 56. He came from California, he worked from California — but his influence stretched around the world.

I started off the day at the Apple Store in Covent Garden here in London, and spoke with Sam Ho, who stopped by just to pay tribute

Sam Ho: I don’t want to sound too sentimental, but this stuff has kind of changed my life — the way I listen to music, the way I get in touch with my friends, the way I access the Internet. You know, it’s just a life-changer.

That was the scene here in London. In Hong Kong, a candle light vigil was held in honor of Steve Jobs.

And as Marketplace’s Rob Schmitz reports, many Chinese people see something uniquely American about the innovation and creativity of Steve Jobs.

Rob Schmitz: When PhD student Weng Qianchun heard about the death of Steve Jobs, he came here, to Asia’s newest and largest Apple store in downtown Shanghai. He figured it was the best way to pay tribute to his hero. I ask him if China will ever have a Steve Jobs.

Weng Qianchun: I don’t think so. If Steve Jobs were born in China, he wouldn’t have become what he is today. Our education system doesn’t encourage innovation or creativity.

Innovation may not be China’s strong suit, but assembly lines are. Chinese factory workers put together thousands of iPhones and iPads a day.

But China is now more important to Apple for its consumers — people like Shen Zhiyang.

Shen Zhiyang: We Chinese have a hard time following our hearts. He did. I really admire him — but I’ve never wanted to buy an Apple product because everyone has one.

But Shen is so moved by the passing of Apple’s founder that ten minutes later, he walks out of the store with a smile, and a new iPad2 — assembled in China, bought in China, inspired by Steve.

In Shanghai, I’m Rob Schmitz, for Marketplace.

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