The iPhone 7’s popularity in Hong Kong has taken a naughty turn when its new marketing slogan was translated in Cantonese, a language mostly spoken in Hong Kong.
The slogan, “This is 7” — roughly translates in Cantonese to “This is penis” as the character for “seven” is pronounced tsat (or “chat”), an alternative slang word for the male sex organ. Jokes about the phone being a penis for its lack of significant features have emerged in social media.
“Without a 3.5mm earbud jack, this is exactly penis,” commented one Hong Kong netizen on a Facebook post about the Chinese translations of the slogan.
Similarly, Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 received the same mockery with its launch earlier this year because the “Note 7” translation sounds like “stick of penis.”
The term should not be taken as offensive however, as Quartz pointed out, that the term is often used jokingly and is also often associated with a person described as stupid or funny.
Incidentally, the latest batch of iPhones have enjoyed a positive response in Hong Kong after a successful pre-order sales that sold out the iPhone Plus 7 in less that 10 minutes, prompting local traders to regain confidence in the product despite the latest version’s lukewarm reception from tech analysts.