Unicom to launch Apple iPhone in China on October 1

Apple Online Store “China Unicom, the country’s second-largest mobile operator, said on Monday it would start selling Apple’s iPhones on October 1, China’s national day, as it hopes to lure more high-end users to boost profits,” Justine Lau reports for The Financial Times.

“As the mainland’s first official vendor of the iPhone, Unicom said it would sell the handsets for about Rmb5,000 ($732.50) each, without specifying which model that would apply to. Subscribers can choose from eight service plans, ranging from Rmb126 to Rmb886 a month. Users who sign a two-year contract to spend more than Rmb186 per month would receive handset subsidies of up to Rmb4,253,” Lau reports. “According to Sina, China’s biggest portal, subscribers who choose the top service plan and prepay Rmb7,999 in credit will receive a 3GS model of the iPhone with 32GB of memory free of charge.”

Lau reports, “By comparison, AT&T in the US offers the same iPhone model for $299 each with a two-year contract based on a $69.99 to $149.99 monthly service plan. None of the models sold by Unicom comes with WiFi capabilities, as demanded by the country’s regulators.”

Full article here.

14 Comments

  1. From the sounds of it, that $700+ price is if they buy it outright. With a long-term commitment, it will be subsidized just like AT&T;does. So the price isn’t that crazy at all… it’s what the phone’s actual retail cost is here too.

  2. China has it’s own WiFi standard but this will be interesting, lot of companies use international WiFi standard inside their offices. If the iPhone really is missing WiFi, how many days does it take for somebody to come up with a hack or two to get around it.

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