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China Mobile exec says Apple is working on a 4G LTE iPhone

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
The chairman of carrier China Mobile said on Wednesday that Apple has "made it clear" that the company intends to support high-speed long-term evolution 4G wireless technology in a future update to the iPhone.

China Mobile Chairman Wang Jianzhou spoke this week about the prospect of the new CDMA iPhone coming to his company's network, according to Reuters. In remarks made in Davos, Switzerland, he also revealed that Apple has plans to support long-term evolution 4G networks, though he did not provide a timeframe.

"These two years we have been discussing the issue. Right now the situation is moving forward. Apple has made it clear they will support TD-LTE," he was quoted as saying.

China Mobile utilizes a TD-SCDMA network, its own home-grown standard for 3G wireless connectivity. The chairman revealed that his company has been in negotiations for years with Apple in an effort to get the company to support the technology with the iPhone.

Apple was asked about the prospect of an LTE iPhone when it announced the new CDMA iPhone, set to arrive on the Verizon network in the U.S. on Feb. 10, earlier this month. Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook revealed that Apple chose not to go with LTE because it would require significant design changes for the handset, and Verizon and its customers indicated they would rather not wait for the iPhone.

China Mobile has been talking up the iPhone for some time, but Apple's handset remains only available on the China Unicom network in a non-exclusive deal that became official in 2009.

While China Unicom has more than 150 million subscribers, China Mobile remains a much larger opportunity for Apple, with more than 570 million subscribers as of 2010.

Apple has concentrated its efforts on China in recent years, an investment that has begun to pay off for the Cupertino, Calif., company. Last quarter, the company reported a fourfold increase in revenue from the nation of over one billion, amassing $2.6 billion in the first quarter of fiscal 2011.

Apple executives also revealed that its four retail stores in China are now the company's most visited in the entire world. The iPhone maker intends to aggressively expand its retail presence in China, with plans to open 25 retail stores in the nation.
post #2 of 22
China Mobile has about 20,000,000 more customers than stated. They closed out the calendar year with 584,017,000, according to their website, and adding 5,000,000 per month. Apple has so much room to grow in China I say buy more stock.
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post #3 of 22
Well duh. Of course they are working on one. 2012.
post #4 of 22
Apple will support future cell phone technology? No sh*t.
post #5 of 22
You mean Apple won't be sitting on their butts expecting technology to remain stagnant?

Quelle surprise!
post #6 of 22
This is a given- not news.
post #7 of 22
Half a billion subscribers, I think it's well worth it for Apple to jump to China Mobile.. That is more subscribers than the US population.
post #8 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wurm5150 View Post

Half a billion subscribers, I think it's well worth it for Apple to jump to China Mobile.. That is more subscribers than the US population.

Yes !

In addition, India has over 390M cell phone subscribers !!
post #9 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook revealed that Apple chose not to go with LTE because it would require significant design changes for the handset, and Verizon and its customers indicated they would rather not wait for the iPhone.

Well, those customers have been indicating that for the last 3 and half years, so I don't see this point.
post #10 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wurm5150 View Post

Half a billion subscribers, I think it's well worth it for Apple to jump to China Mobile.. That is more subscribers than the US population.

Number of subscribers isn't the main thing, the amount of revenue you can get from them is...given the per capita GDP of China and India, I would be very amazed if even 1% of those subscribers could afford a normal priced iPhone. Those markets aren't lucrative like the western world markets.
post #11 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Y.M.S.BUSHAN View Post

Yes !

In addition, India has over 390M cell phone subscribers !!

India has nearly double that at around 700M, but note that is over all carriers while the China Mobile carrier has nearly 600M by itself. The largest carrier in India, Bharti Airtel, is barely scraping by with 150M subcscribers. LOL
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post #12 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Giffen View Post

Number of subscribers isn't the main thing, the amount of revenue you can get from them is...given the per capita GDP of China and India, I would be very amazed if even 1% of those subscribers could afford a normal priced iPhone. Those markets aren't lucrative like the western world markets.

You'd be surprised. China always does.. Still that 1%, you're talking 5M and at average selling price of the iPhone you're looking at $3B potential. That's nothing to sneeze at.
post #13 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Giffen View Post

Number of subscribers isn't the main thing, the amount of revenue you can get from them is...given the per capita GDP of China and India, I would be very amazed if even 1% of those subscribers could afford a normal priced iPhone. Those markets aren't lucrative like the western world markets.

You'll be surprised at how many Chinese or Indians are willing to plunk down a significant chunk of change for a fashionable hardware. Not that the iPhone price is THAT significant for Chinese populations nowdays. A fully priced iPhone is around 5000 RMB, and that's about one month's pay for people with a moderatly good job in China. So the purchase decision will be about the same as someone in US need to make about that big screen HDTV he saw.

I say for the top 1% subscribers, they won't even have to think about it. For the next 10% subscribers, they will have to think about the tradeoff, but still won't stop them from purchase. And the next 10-20%, they can get the money if they really want it.
post #14 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wurm5150 View Post

You'd be surprised. China always does.. Still that 1%, you're talking 5M and at average selling price of the iPhone you're looking at $3B potential. That's nothing to sneeze at.

1% is low for this year (2011), and will be greater next year as China's economy grows by double digits%.

As noted in other sources, the petite bourgeois of China are very 'brand' conscious. Carrying an iPhone or iPad is a statement of wealth (whether realized or not). In other words, people 'sacrifice' to carry/wear status items, of which the iPhone is one. Chinese would rather save for an iPhone than a car or a better rental (and for what I've seen, urban rental space in China is @#$@#$ expensive). And the fact that GM sells more cars in China than in the US (again, a US car is status there, much like a European car is status here), my guess is the iPhone will take off on China Mobile.
post #15 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

...
"These two years we have been discussing the issue. Right now the situation is moving forward. Apple has made it clear they will support TD-LTE," he was quoted as saying.
...

the problem is TD part of LTE. not sure any chips can support multiple radio interface thus apple can use one chip for all markets.
post #16 of 22
Apple may have to rethink any possible tie-ups with China Mobile. They can't seem to keep their mouths shut.

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post #17 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Giffen View Post

Number of subscribers isn't the main thing, the amount of revenue you can get from them is...given the per capita GDP of China and India, I would be very amazed if even 1% of those subscribers could afford a normal priced iPhone. Those markets aren't lucrative like the western world markets.

China is 10 years away from catching the US in per GDP
Income is distributed more un equally there than even the US.
If 20-30% of the country can afford an iPhone that's 300-400m.

I bet that Chinas per capita income is higher than the US when Ford came out with cars. In fact China is the biggest Market for cars in the world. It just passed the US.

Cars are more expensive than iPhones.

A cheap 3GS would clean up.
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post #18 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by asdasd View Post

China is 10 years away from catching the US in per GDP
Income is distributed more un equally there than even the US.
If 20-30% of the country can afford an iPhone that's 300-400m.

I bet that Chinas per capita income is higher than the US when Ford came out with cars. In fact China is the biggest Market for cars in the world. It just passed the US.

Cars are more expensive than iPhones.

A cheap 3GS would clean up.

I expect Apple to use their new CDMA phone to make inroads into China (China Unicom) and India as production allows it. I think China Mobile is more of a long-term project.
post #19 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Giffen View Post

Number of subscribers isn't the main thing, the amount of revenue you can get from them is...given the per capita GDP of China and India, I would be very amazed if even 1% of those subscribers could afford a normal priced iPhone. Those markets aren't lucrative like the western world markets.

This is very narrow thinky. You cannot look at per capita GPD, or per capita income either for that matter. The wealth distribution here is very skewed. That said, even those at the lower rungs of the urban salary range will eagerly spend one or two months of their salary on a flashy phone (iPhone) and now tablet (iPad). Compared to Chinese consumers, consumers in the west are cheapskates.

It's funny as folks here will save for a year or two to buy a car (in cash, btw - auto financing is not readily available here), and then bitch about having to pay 5 RMB/hr (less than $1/hr) for parking.

Anyways, I already talked about this in a previous post so I won't repeat everything here:

http://forums.appleinsider.com/showp...0&postcount=33

To close, I have a Chinese friend here in BJ, his monthly household income is less than $1000 USD. He bought an iPad recently (from Apple's China online store) after playing with mine. Just the other day we were having dinner and he told me that he's already "sold" 3 more iPads to his cousins and friends. Now imagine the same thing happening with them - it's a snowball effect. This is why I see Apple taking off in China over the next few years (and I also see the same potential for India).

So don't discount consumers in these "developing" countries. As consumers in the west worry about unemployment rates, disappearing pensions, rising education and health care costs, etc. and cut back on their spending, global companies will shift their focus more and more towards countries like China and India. In fact, if they haven't already done so they are late to the game.
post #20 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by evanwilliams4u View Post

Apple will support future cell phone technology? No sh*t.

What I found interesting was that they claim Apple will in fact support CM's homegrown standard (TD-LTE). Of course this public statement could just be some tactic to pressure Apple.
post #21 of 22
BTW, trolls were wrong as usual. First LTE phones came out in 2010.


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post #22 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

China Mobile has about 20,000,000 more customers than stated. They closed out the calendar year with 584,017,000, according to their website, and adding 5,000,000 per month. Apple has so much room to grow in China I say buy more stock.

I am one of the user and buyer of China Mobile. Honestly I have now 5 mobile of it.
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