Apple Sign Long-Awaited China Mobile Deal


In December Apple secured their long awaited deal with China Mobile, and have already seen 100,000 handset pre-orders.

China Mobile is the world’s largest mobile network, and the deal makes Apple’s iPhones available to the carrier’s 750m subscribers – three times bigger than the entire US mobile population.

The 5s and 5c were made available to order on Christmas Day, and will be available on 17th January.

Analysts predict that the deal could amount to anywhere between 10-25m sales in the next year, which would generate nearly $9bn revenue.

Apple CEO Tim Cook said: “Apple has enormous respect for China Mobile and we are excited to begin working together.

“China is an extremely important market for Apple and our partnership with China Mobile presents us the opportunity to bring iPhone to the customers of the world’s largest network.

“iPhone customers in China are an enthusiastic and rapidly growing group.”

China is the world’s largest smartphone market, with sales reaching 87.7m in the third quarter of 2013, according to IDC.

The market’s sales growth totals 52% each year, in comparison to 40% for the rest of the world.

Apple are ranked 7th in this $80bn market, with a share of 5%.

The Chinese market is more budget-conscious, with many companies profiting from selling low-cost smartphones.

Many thought Apple’s 5c would be a much cheaper phone, designed to compete in the more budget-conscious markets of China and Russia.

However the sales in China were relatively disappointing for Apple, which heightened the need to push the China Mobile deal through.

Xi Guohua, the chairman of China Mobile, said: “Apple’s iPhone is very much loved by millions of customers around the world. 

“We know there are many China Mobile customers and potential new customers who are anxiously awaiting the incredible combination of iPhone on China Mobile’s leading network.”

Apples shares jumped 3% after the deal was signed, and they saw 100,000 pre orders in 2 days, according to estimates by an analyst from Wedge Partners.

China Unicom and China Telecom, who already sell the new iPhones, saw 120,000 and 150,000 pre-orders of the new iPhones respectively.

The pre-order numbers might seem lower than expected, but the phones, released in September, are no longer brand new. 

The real success of the deal will become more clear when the phones become available on 17th January.