This weekend, folks in Sichuan, China were rocked by a devastating earthquake that leveled much of the area. The quake, which the country’s earthquake administration rated a 7.0 (US Geo Survey says 6.6), destroyed countless houses and buildings.

Apple has since began facilitating donations for relief efforts in the area, and has pledged to provide new equipment for schools in the affected cities. And we’ve just received word that it’s upped its commitment by offering up $8 million to the victims…

In a press release (via MacRumors), Apple notes that it has donated around 50 million RMB (or approximately $8 million in US dollars) to a fund for those affected by Saturday’s earthquake. This, as we understand it, is in addition to its donation drive.

Donations during major disasters are fairly common for the iPad-maker, who donated some $2.5 million to the American Red Cross organization for Hurricane Sandy relief efforts. The superstorm tore through the northeastern part of the US last fall.

The situation, however, is more interesting in China, as the company has quite the relationship with the country. In addition to it being a huge market for smartphones and tablets, many Apple products are made in Foxconn’s Chinese manufacturing plants.

Apple is also still recovering from a PR nightmare in China, where government-backed reports called the company out for unfair warranty practices. The complaints have seemingly died off though after Tim Cook issued an open letter-apology to the country.

The earthquake struck the city of Ya’an in China’s Sichuan province on Saturday night. And at the time of this writing, there have been hundreds of casualties reported and the injury count is said to be in upwards of 12,000.

  • This is great.

    • hkgsulphate

      no its not great….the money will never go to the victims’ hands….even the Chinese knows it, especially people in Hong Kong..

  • Smiley

    $8 million for upwards of 12,000 victims is $666 a person. Apple, you are so sly. 😉

    • Tim Cook is an Iron Maiden fan 😛

    • It’s also the price of the 1st Apple computer.

  • Faith in humanity restored ^_^

  • disqus_Dxp6KLeqJU

    As a Chinese local,I don’t like to see any foreign company to do any donating ,because we know that at least half of the money would be grafted,only half would be used for the victims,this is the truly inside story of some Chinese government agencies.Almost all Chinese citizens know that,but I think most of the foreign companies don’t see.

    Sorry for my English,but that’s all I can explain.

    • Mathi_11

      But $4 million is still better than nothing right?

    • hkgsulphate

      half? shouldn’t it be 99.9% grafted? o_O
      Hong Kong donated 2 millions HKD for them to build a new sch back in 2008 yet within a year the site had become a shopping mall….

  • Glad to see Apple chipping in to help for a great cause!

    • Apple always did this.. only haters think that Bill Gates is the good guy and Steve Jobs the bad guy

      • You’re confusing haters with realistic people. Gates to this day keeps donating to charity, and in total, he has donated over $30 billion. He will also donate the rest of his fortune, over $60 billion to charity. Call me when Apple (Jobs, Cook, Ive or anyone else) does something noble like that!

      • 1st, Steve Jobs never was the most richest guy on earth. Bill gates was.

        2nd. Steve Jobs only cared about his companies, the people who work there, and make great products. Bill Gates never did.. he received most of the money, that’s why he was the richest man on earth.

        3rd. Steve jobs always focus his mind on his companies, and used his companies to help others, with Red Products and other donations. Not only he raised the money with the help of the costumers, but also gave money from Apple/Pixar too.

        4th. He never bragged about that…that’s why people only care about Bill Gates and think that Steve was the bad guy. But lets see the facts, Bono is one of the biggest Philanthropist around the world and he was a huge friend of Steve Jobs and when people pointed fingers to Steve, saying that he never donated anything, he asked people to don’t talk from what they don’t know…

      • Damn you’re clueless. But I gotta give you props for the ridiculous amount of excuses you’re able to think of to justify your opinions!

        “Jobs was a ruthless totalitarian dictator of Apple. Cheated his only ‘friend’, Steve Wozniak, out of thousands of dollars in early friendship. Fathered an illegitimate daughter and refused to take responsibility until years after the fact. Sits at home typing angry emails to his critics. Regularly loses his temper when his minions do not do enough to please him. Does not contribute to charity. Gates is a lovable nerd who brought the world its favorite OS, Windows. A responsible, caring family man. Left Microsoft and has dedicated the rest of his life towards charitable causes. Has pledged to give away his fortune to charity over the rest of his life. Received an honorary knighthood for his philanthropy. Named Time’s Person of the Year in 2005 and one of the top ten “heroes of our time” in 2006.”

        Say whatever you want about Jobs or Gates, you still can’t escape the fact one of those will donate almost $100 billion to charity. Now go on, brag about how Jobs is awesome, Windows are shit and how Jobs donated a couple million to Chinese people affected by the recent events.

      • Testimonial of a cheated friend.
        youtube com/watch?v=dK_XEGrzHUo

        Another fact.
        macrumors com/2011/09/02/bono-defends-steve-jobs-against-criticism-over-lack-of-public-philanthropy/

        You’re welcome.

      • Gates already donated over $30 billion to charity, and will donate another $60 billion. How much did Jobs donate?

      • I don’t know… Steve never bragged about his donations. To give something, you don’t need to tell everybody that you give.

  • Why help the chinese? They should settle thier own problem. they are also a menace in the society.

  • @dongiuj

    Have to support your workforce I guess.