Apple signs deal with world's largest mobile carrier

According to reports, Apple has finally signed a deal with China Mobile, the world's largest mobile phone carrier with over 750 million subscribers. The multi-year deal will allow consumers on China Mobile's network to purchase the iPhone 5C and iPhone 5S, and the phones will be sold in China Mobile and Apple retail stores starting January 17th. 

This news comes only a week after the carrier's announcement that they would be spending $13 billion to launch what will be the world's largest 4G network with over 500,000 base stations, bringing 4G access to over 340 cities in China. And according to NASDAQ, the deal will benefit both Apple and China Mobile greatly -- the carrier has nearly 500 million more subscribers than the two largest in America combined and a majority market share in China, a demographic which has largely been untapped by Apple. 

In October leaked documents from TENAA, a Chinese telecommunications organization, showed that iPhone 5 phones had passed certification and radio compatibility for use on China Mobile's networks, a move which strongly hinted towards a future launch. With the deal now in ink, Apple has secured a strong place in the Chinese market, which may allow them to gain the upper hand against rival competitors such as Samsung and HTC. 

Source: Apple press release | Image via Shutterstock - interior of Apple Store in Shanghai

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26 Comments

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Wow! This article missed the biggest point - Apple STILL doesn't support China Mobile's TD-SCDMA 3G system. They will, however support the 4G TD-LTE - when China Mobile start rolling it out in 2014 - 2015. But simply ignoring the 3G market is, IMHO fatal.

Both iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c have the hardware to support TD-SCDMA networks, perhaps your information is a bit outdated?

Even models imported from regions like Hong Kong or Japan can be "cracked" to enable the software support for TD-SCDMA and TD-LTE on CMCC's network, and it was revealed a while ago that the Guangdong branch of CMCC itself was behind this crack. There have been hundreds of people running this crack since its launch and they are all enjoying TD-SCDMA(and even TD-LTE in some cities) support.

There's no way that the official launch models of CMCC iPhones don't support TD-SCDMA, since the hardware already support it, cracks have been floating around, and there's even regulation rules against a CMCC phone not supporting TD-SCDMA.

hehehe, people can talk a lot about other companies that sell more than apple, but wondering if you know that apple only sells one mobile cellphone product: iPhone. Instead Nokia and a lot others have to offer hundreds of products. For example: Nokia releases like 30 cell phones models around there and they could sell: 1 million in one week. but guess what? Apple can sell more than that with just one model.

That is the big difference.

I'm an Android fan, but I like to accept when other companies do a good job.

Dude 90% of Chinese people LOVE Apple. Anything apple and they will buy it because they have very high build quality within their set of products. Don't get me wrong I love/live in a Chinese city and I know this ****. This is only gonna make Apple even bigger.

suprNOVA said,
Dude 90% of Chinese people LOVE Apple. Anything apple and they will buy it because they have very high build quality within their set of products. Don't get me wrong I love/live in a Chinese city and I know this ****. This is only gonna make Apple even bigger.

Jeez, where you been hiding the last year? Chinese people -specially the young ones with disposable income - wouldn't be seen dead with an Apple product. Apple is for laoren (old folks).

dvb2000 said,
yeah, unless they drop the price to around $100, the Chinese won't be interested.

Sure.... There are more Mercedes in Shangai than in Stuttgart...

dvb2000 said,
yeah, unless they drop the price to around $100, the Chinese won't be interested.

Apple has sold the iPhone in China for the last 4 years... on China Unicom and China Telecom.

Why does everyone think the iPhone on China Mobile will such be a disaster?

Fritzly said,

Sure.... There are more Mercedes in Shangai than in Stuttgart...

Shanghai has a 40 times larger population...

rfirth said,

Shanghai has a 40 times larger population...

Which surely means Apple is likely to do well in China? Especially when the iPhone has become a bit of a status symbol over there

rfirth said,

Shanghai has a 40 times larger population...

And plenty of billionaires,.... Last week I was in Rome and the line in front Gucci store, in Via Condotti, was populated by Chinese instead of Japanese as it was in the past.

It will sell out like hotcakes at the current price. Apple will have no trouble selling the phone there, they (just like everyone else) will go nuts for them.

Fritzly said,

And plenty of billionaires,.... Last week I was in Rome and the line in front Gucci store, in Via Condotti, was populated by Chinese instead of Japanese as it was in the past.

How do you know they were real Chinese? They might have been fakes. Many people can't tell these days.

check your facts, in the big chinese coastline cities there are people so filthy rich, that when you find out, you will wanna clean the sewers with your tongue

Major_Plonquer said,
How do you know they were real Chinese? They might have been fakes. Many people can't tell these days.

A real Chinese, as opposed to a counterfeit Chinese?

Major_Plonquer said,

How do you know they were real Chinese? They might have been fakes. Many people can't tell these days.

Quite simple actually: I was together with Guccio Gucci who confirmed that Chinese are nowadays the top buyers.

You're right... Samsung will remain the volume leader in smartphone sales for the foreseeable future.

Don't forget... Samsung sells smartphones on over 350 carriers around the globe... while the iPhone is on 200 or so.

But you're right... Samsung wins the "most smartphones sold" trophy. Apple will never be able to sell as many smartphones as Samsung. Hooray?

In related news... Wendy's will never sell as many hamburgers as McDonald's. McDonald's will remain the volume leader in fast-food hamburger sales.

And much like Samsung vs Apple... McDonald's has 34,000 restaurants compared to Wendy's 6,600

But what does this mean? Is it #1 or nothing?

Michael Scrip said,
You're right... Samsung will remain the volume leader in smartphone sales for the foreseeable future.

Don't forget... Samsung sells smartphones on over 350 carriers around the globe... while the iPhone is on 200 or so.

But you're right... Samsung wins the "most smartphones sold" trophy. Apple will never be able to sell as many smartphones as Samsung. Hooray?

In related news... Wendy's will never sell as many hamburgers as McDonald's. McDonald's will remain the volume leader in fast-food hamburger sales.

And much like Samsung vs Apple... McDonald's has 34,000 restaurants compared to Wendy's 6,600

But what does this mean? Is it #1 or nothing?

Good comparison. Didn't think of it like that till I saw your post. Anyone have anything to counter to this?

suprNOVA said,

Good comparison. Didn't think of it like that till I saw your post. Anyone have anything to counter to this?

yeah.

no one but fans of brands care who sells what and how much of it to who
all normal people care is buy a thing and this thing realizes expectations and the person is satisfied with the money they spent

But what does this mean? Is it #1 or nothing?

Samsung has the volume edge over Apple, however, Samsung also sells low-end phones, so the majority of their market share isn't dominated by the S4 or the Note, especially in countries with low cost of living. Apple, however, is earning the same percentage on every phone it sells, which is why their profits could be higher with this deal.

Saex_Conroy said,

yeah.

no one but fans of brands care who sells what and how much of it to who
all normal people care is buy a thing and this thing realizes expectations and the person is satisfied with the money they spent

QFT.

Hardcore Til I Die said,
QFT.

pot: hey kettle
kettle: what
pot: You're black.

I think his post was more ignorance than trolling. Yours on the other hand was designed to infuriate.

Yes normal people care that they like what they purchase, but there are more than fanboys who care about markets and percentages, etc. We call those people: investors.