iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus will officially be available to pre-order in China from Friday, October 10, ahead of their launch a week later, Apple has confirmed. The news comes just hours after the Cupertino company’s new smartphones finally received approval from China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.
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Days after China Mobile, aka the world’s largest mobile carrier, started taking preorders for the iPhone 6, rivals China Telecom and China Unicom (the second- and third-largest carriers in the country) have pointed out that they too will be selling Apple’s eagerly anticipated next-gen handset.
Referring to the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 as the “iPhone Air” and the 5.5-inch variant as the “iPhone Pro,” China Unicom has put up a pricing list for the devices, showing how cost will vary according to storage capacity and form factor.
Pretty much everyone already knows that the iPhone 6 is coming out next month, but one of Apple’s carrier partners in China just couldn’t hold onto the secret anymore, and announced to customers on Weibo that it will sell an unlocked iPhone 6.
The ad was quickly deleted, however, it did reveal that Apple plans to release a single version of the iPhone 6 that supports all the wireless networks in the China for the first time ever.
Apple is now using China Telecom’s servers instead of its own to power iCloud for Chinese customers. The switch took place on August 8th, and now the carrier is Apple’s only cloud service provider in China.
The decision is likely a direct response to the Chinese state-controlled media recently lashing out at Apple over national security concerns.
Further evidence to suggest that the new iPhones are almost ready for their long-awaited debut on China Mobile — the world’s largest carrier — has surfaced today after both the iPhone 5s and the iPhone 5c gained regulatory approval for the carrier’s TD-LTE network.
A much-anticipated iPhone deal between Apple and China Mobile looks even closer this week after the popular smartphone gained regulatory approval to run on the carrier’s wireless network. The new partnership will see the iPhone supported by the world’s largest network for the first time, opening it up to more than 700 million subscribers.
Apple could launch its $330 “iPhone mini” as early as this summer to boost the company’s smartphone sales in China, according to Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty. It’s expected the low-cost device could provide Apple with an additional 20% of the smartphone market, adding to the 10% it has already claimed with the iPhone 5. And with smartphone prices now beginning to stabilize in China, now would be an ideal time for such a device.
Apple’s 4G-equipped iPad mini and fourth-generation iPad have taken a step closer towards a launch in China today after receiving their network licenses from Chinese telecommunications certification center TENAA. Like the iPhone 5, the tablets are expected to be available on the China Unicom and China Telecom networks.
China Unicom, China’s second-largest mobile carrier, began accepting iPhone 5 pre-orders on Monday ahead of the handset’s December 14 launch. And during the first day alone, it saw more than 100,000 orders placed online. Apple devices have become hugely popular in China, and it seems the iPhone 5 will be no exception.
Apple has issued a press release announcing that the iPhone 5, the iPad mini, and the fourth-generation iPad with Retina display will be arriving in China next month. Both iPads will be available on December 7, while the iPhone 5 will be available on December 14.