China Mobile, Apple reportedly ink deal to sell iPhone 4 by end of Oct.

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
Apple is said to have landed the biggest prize in the mobile industry, partnering with China Mobile, the largest wireless carrier in the world, according to alleged company filings.



Various sites this week relayed a report from Chinese-language ccidcom.com, which cited a company filing that allegedly revealed China Mobile has entered an agreement with Apple to sell the iPhone 4 at the end of October. China Mobile is the largest mobile carrier in the world with 611 million wireless subscribers, controlling 68 percent of the total wireless market in China.



Reacting to the rumors on Friday, analyst Mike Abramsky with RBC Capital Markets said an iPhone launch with China Mobile could equate to an additional 2 million to 3 million units sold at the end of 2011, or between 8 percent and 12 percent of total iPhone shipments.



Abramsky expects smartphone shipments in China will increase 57 percent to 87 million in calendar year 2012, and he believes nearly 70 percent of those shipments will be on China Mobile's network alone. He noted that even though the iPhone is not officially available with China Mobile, there are more than 6 million "grey market" handsets from Apple active on the network.



Currently, the iPhone is only available on China Unicom's network, where it went on sale in 2009. Apple's handset got off to a slow start, due in part to the grey market for iPhones, as well as the fact that government regulators blocked the inclusion of Wi-Fi on the device in favor of a homegrown standard.



But the iPhone's popularity in the country improved immensely in 2010, culminating in the launch of the iPhone 4 last September. Strong demand for the handset led to it being sold out for months.







Last month, AppleInsider uncovered an unverified photo purportedly showing an iPhone 4 running on China Mobile's 3G network. Additionally, Apple COO Tim Cook was reportedly seen visiting the wireless operator's headquarters last month, fueling rumors that the two companies are nearing a deal.



Apple's growth in China has been an important piece of the company's business in recent months, amounting to $9 billion alone this year. That trend is expected to continue upward, with China's smartphone market estimated to be worth $70 billion total.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 16
    solipsismsolipsism Posts: 25,726member
    So is the consensus a separate model that is GSM/TD-SCDMA or a Qualcomm Gobi chip that supports GSM/CDMA/HS*PA/CDMA2000/TD-SCDMA?
  • Reply 2 of 16
    sheffsheff Posts: 1,407member
    I think it's awesome that chinese are buying iPhones. I was sure that china would be dominated by Android / ZTE combination. After all chinese could make really nice hardware knockoffs of the iPhone since gen1, but were lacking in software. With android they could finally make a coherent product.



    Perhaps iPhone 4 will be discounted as the 3GS was and foxxconn workers could enjoy the "fruits" of their labor.
  • Reply 3 of 16
    auxioauxio Posts: 2,475member
    Might be time to consider localizing apps in Cantonese and/or Mandarin... anyone have stats on app purchasing in China?
  • Reply 4 of 16
    So abramsky is already trying to mitigate sales of the iphone. CHL already has six million iphones on their network. Imagine how many will purchase an official one. 3 million at the end of 2012 is utterly ridiculous. These anals know that now, apple has the potential of selling 40 million iphones and 15 million ipads per quarter. These two products alone would mean $36 billion in revenue per quarter. that alone would mean at least $9 billion in net earnings per Q or $9.50 in eps per Q.
  • Reply 5 of 16
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by fjose1929 View Post


    So abramsky is already trying to mitigate sales of the iphone. CHL already has six million iphones on their network. Imagine how many will purchase an official one. 3 million at the end of 2012 is utterly ridiculous. These anals know that now, apple has the potential of selling 40 million iphones and 15 million ipads per quarter. These two products alone would mean $36 billion in revenue per quarter. that alone would mean at least $9 billion in net earnings per Q or $9.50 in eps per Q.



    ATTN AI THE EAGLE HAS LANDED!!! and of all places in CHINA!!!! *(now-if only other US american companies could innovate and create something the Chinese want so desperately that we can make $$ off them-

    Hmmm... Now that's a thought..



    Oh, WAIT... the iPhone is actually made in China- so do they send them back to Apple in California and then Apple ships them back to China???)
  • Reply 6 of 16
    jcozjcoz Posts: 251member
    I think there is a typo and it should be 2-3 million at the end of '11, not '12
  • Reply 7 of 16
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by auxio View Post


    Might be time to consider localizing apps in Cantonese and/or Mandarin...



    Silly rabbit... Chinese don't _buy_ apps. They pirate them. But then Apple doesn't make it easy to buy. You have to have a US Dollar credit card, which very few people have.
  • Reply 8 of 16
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TokyoJimu View Post


    Silly rabbit... Chinese don't _buy_ apps. They pirate them. But then Apple doesn't make it easy to buy. You have to have a US Dollar credit card, which very few people have.



    Most apps are free.
  • Reply 9 of 16
    cvaldes1831cvaldes1831 Posts: 1,832member
    You don't need a credit card to purchase apps. Download one free app from your iDevice. You will be prompted to create an iTunes Store account, yet will not be required to provide a credit card.



    You can purchase iTunes Store gift cards with cash and redeem them. This is safer than tying your iTunes account to a credit card, or even worse, PayPal.
  • Reply 10 of 16
    auxioauxio Posts: 2,475member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TokyoJimu View Post


    Silly rabbit... Chinese don't _buy_ apps. They pirate them. But then Apple doesn't make it easy to buy. You have to have a US Dollar credit card, which very few people have.



    Why do you think I'm asking for stats instead of jumping right into it?



    I know full well that piracy is rampant there. But if China Mobile signs on, the market might grow large enough that even if you get a fraction of the sales you get from other areas of the world (per capita), it would be worth it.



    That said, knowing that you need a USD credit card to purchase apps in China definitely makes things clearer to me. So thanks for the tip.
  • Reply 11 of 16
    cloudgazercloudgazer Posts: 2,161member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    So is the consensus a separate model that is GSM/TD-SCDMA or a Qualcomm Gobi chip that supports GSM/CDMA/HS*PA/CDMA2000/TD-SCDMA?



    Personally I think a separate model makes more sense, for several reasons. It would allow them to make a slightly cheaper phone that couldn't be grey imported to non-china markets and so couldn't damage first world sales, and it should allow them to use a cheaper chipset on both china and non china models.



    A truly global phone will come along eventually, but I don't think the economics support it yet.
  • Reply 12 of 16
    pridonpridon Posts: 81member
    Kiosks selling itunes cards. According to a June report, Hon Hai is planning to spend $1.6 billion on expanding its Cybermart outllets which will become authorized Apple resellers. If the sell the itunes/giftcards, Aplle gets to use the "float" on unspent funds - not that they can earn much interest on the money.



    I believe the Hon Hai strategy was put in place as a part of expanding the carrier base in China.
  • Reply 13 of 16
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 33,252member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by solipsism View Post


    So is the consensus a separate model that is GSM/TD-SCDMA or a Qualcomm Gobi chip that supports GSM/CDMA/HS*PA/CDMA2000/TD-SCDMA?



    Yes, it is.
  • Reply 14 of 16
    smalmsmalm Posts: 674member
    Why do people think there is a need for a cheaper iPhone in China? That is a fundametal misunderstanding of the chinese market.
  • Reply 15 of 16
    paul94544paul94544 Posts: 1,027member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by smalM View Post


    Why do people think there is a need for a cheaper iPhone in China? That is a fundametal misunderstanding of the chinese market.



    $500 per share for sure next year yes yes yes
  • Reply 16 of 16
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bitzandbitez View Post


    ATTN AI THE EAGLE HAS LANDED!!! and of all places in CHINA!!!! *(now-if only other US american companies could innovate and create something the Chinese want so desperately that we can make $$ off them-

    Hmmm... Now that's a thought..




    In 2010, China imported $385 Billion in goods from the United States. The united states exports more to China that any other country except Canada and Mexico. The amount is up nearly 30% over 2009, and the trend is continual increase.



    China wants so desperately to give us money already. Our biggest single category of exports to China is already computers and electrical components. It is good news that Apple will too export to China, but there is nothing unique or new about American electronics being sold in China - we sell billions of dollars of electronics to them. My guess is that Apple already exports hundreds of millions of dollars of goods to China.



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