China is a huge market for many companies, Apple being no different. Its mobile phone market is made up of one of the largest (if not the largest) user base in the world. So with that, you would think Apple would want to be on every carrier, seeing as each carrier brings with it millions upon million of subscribers, and therefore possible iPhone users. One of the major carriers in China that Apple has yet to penetrate is China Mobile, but that might be changing soon. With 700 million subscribers, both China Mobile and Apple would greatly benefit from adding the iPhone to its network. China Unicom and China Telecom already are set to be getting the iPhone 5, so Apple would be on the 3 largest carriers in China with this addition.
Well, according to the WSJ, the Qualcomm chip found within the iPhone 5 during the iFixit teardown supports TD-CDMA, which is what China Mobile’s network uses for 3G. However Apple doesn’t include such technology in the run down of specs for the iPhone 5, which is certainly an interesting observation. According to HSBC researchers, not much would have to be done by Apple to the newest iOS device in order to get it fully working on the network, a move which would greatly benefit them. China Mobile’s 700 million subscribers dwarf that of the 227 million combined of China Telecom and China Unicom. This would open up Apple to a much larger share of China’s vast mobile consumer market.
What do you think? Interested to see if Apple makes this move? Do you think Apple would announce a slightly changed version later on just for China Mobile? Let us know in the comments.