China Mobile launching new brand on December 18, time for iPhone?

The iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c may have launched in China, but there's still one notable absence; a China Mobile iPhone. The worlds largest cellular carrier has long been rumored to begin carrying the iPhone, and as the Wall Street Journal reports, things may begin to progress on December 18:

China Mobile Ltd. said it plans to introduce a new brand for mobile services on Dec. 18, raising expectations of an imminent start to its iPhone sales in the country.

There's nothing specifically linking the iPhone to this announcement, but many reports have suggested in the past that China Mobile won't announce the iPhone until after its 4G services had been announced, but as yet no licenses have been issued. Apple has been licensed to run on China Mobile's network with the iPhone, so it seems to be a question of when rather than if.

Finally securing a deal to work with China Mobile would help Apple's chances of expanding in China greatly. The recent device launches have proved that the worlds most populated country is important to Apple, so it'll be interesting to see what may pan out on December 18.

Source: Wall Street Journal

Richard Devine

Senior Editor at iMore, part time racing driver, full time British guy

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There are 10 comments. Add yours.

RealNeal says:

Good news for Apple. Seems odd that we would get all these reports about 5c production being chopped, when this account alone could dwarf most other markets . Maybe they have some hefty stockpiles ?

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Becjr says:

Hmm... Something sounds fishy about this...

WhatDidYouSayWillis says:

F- China!!!!

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Etios says:

China is a Android-Land with 90% Android marketshare.

sir17reeder says:

Sounds odd. US is always top priority though.

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iCarabma says:

This is a big deal for Apple. The reason they can still dominate mobile profits and Wall Street will be down on them is shareholders are obsessed with growth.

And there is no growth more growthy than China.

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zdn1042 says:

I agree. If Apple can secure this deal, this is going to be huge for them. And if they can successfully infiltrate its market then this will definitely give Apple a good boost in terms of sales and revenue.

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vajrakagyu says:

People underestimate this deal. It really HUGE news for Apple. China is a very closed market and Apple having access to China Mobile (700.000.000 subscribers) will help compete bad Android handsets offering great quality products and iOS.

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rewNATION says:

Why do all asians seem to have iPhones? do they get them for cheap cuz they all have relatives making them in the factories?

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asuperstarr says:

That is great!

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