China Mobile may announce Apple iPhone deal on December 18th

“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,” Lorraine Luk reports for The Wall Street Journal.

“The launch is expected during the company’s 4G global partners conference in Guangzhou, according to China Mobile’s website,” Luk reports. “In September, China’s Telecom Equipment Certification Center gave Apple Inc. the final license necessary for the iPhone to run on China Mobile’s network.”

“China Mobile executives have said iPhone subscriptions likely would come only after the company introduces its 4G platform. Chinese media, including Nanfang Daily, recently reported that China may issue 4G licenses next week,” Luk reports. “‘A deal with China Mobile would give Apple a big boost in the China market as the largest local carrier has the most wealthy subscriber base. I estimate that among China Mobile’s more than 700 million mobile subscribers, at least 10% or 70 million wealthier ones would be potential customers for iPhones,’ Hong Kong-based Mizuho Securities analyst Marvin Lo said.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Could be a nice stock price catalyst.

For reference, Verizon Wireless, the U.S.A.’s largest carrier, has a total of 119.45 million subscribers.


  1. This sort of stuff has been teased for at least a couple of years. From what I recall, it seems late last year, the iPhone was supposed to be ready to officially be on CM early in 2013. People seem to be getting their wires crossed or purposely seeding falsified stories.

    1. Well since the iPhone 5s and 5c are the first and only iPhones to ever support China Mobile’s mobile network, I’d have to argue that these two phones will be made available for that carrier and all previous “stuff” has merely been speculation.

  2. It will boost Apple’s 2014′ Jan-Mar quarter, because Apple obviously will not have much time to sell iPhones in the remaining 12 days of December.

    In this calendar year Jan-Mar quarter was boosted because iPhone sales in China and India started only in this period. Next year’s Jan-Mar period will not have boost this strong, but will still have boost from addition of China Mobile.

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