Fortune is reporting that Apple has completed the required steps necessary to bring the iPhone 4S to the Chinese mainland by January 23rd.
the People's Daily, the official news organ of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, reports that a device with the same model number as the iPhone 4S (A1431) passed the final hurdle, obtaining its China Compulsory Certification on Dec. 21. That gives Apple plenty of time to get the iPhone in the hands of retailers before the Chinese New Year, the biggest shopping event on China's calendar. It falls this year on Jan. 23.
This is big news for Apple given the size of the Chinese mobile market. According to statistical analysis by mobiThinking, China currently leads worldwide mobile growth with over 5.3 billion subscribers, and Apple would do well in further extending their reach by getting a hand in that cookie jar.