Apple is reportedly planning to sell a more affordable model of the iPhone, presumably the rumored iPhone 5C, on China Mobile, the world’s largest carrier, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Rumors of an Apple/China Mobile partnership have been around for years. The Journal didn’t specify whether the deal has been finalized, noting only that Apple is planning on it. Apple is set to hold a separate media event in Beijing on September 11th, shortly after its main event in the US on the 10th.
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Tapping into the China Mobile customer base will bring a huge windfall for Apple, as the carrier has almost 750 million subscribers. The move to sell a more affordable iPhone will also help Apple achieve deeper penetration in the Chinese market. So far the iPhone has largely been a luxury device in the country, but the iPhone 5C would help Apple compete with mid-range Android players.
Earlier this week, China Telecom appeared to confirm the imminent arrival of the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C in a post to Sina Weibo.
China Mobile and NTT Docomo have been the two major carrier hold-outs for Apple. Given recent reports that Docomo will begin selling the iPhone as well, Apple appears set to have two significant new partners this fall.
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