Starting Jan 17th 2014, Apple will start offering iPhone on China mobile today’s top telecommunications company by market capitalization with about 740 million subscribers.
The move is in a bid to increase its worldwide sales thanks to the vast Chinese market, iPhone will however encounter various challenges penetrating the Chinese market where phones using Google’s android operating system dominate this being because of price.
The company previously being a major player in Europe and the United States china mobile was among world’s major carriers that didn’t offer the iPhone.
“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,” said Timothy D. Cook, Apple’s Chief Executive Officer.
Apple has had longstanding agreements with the country’s no. 2 and 3 carriers China Unicom and China Telecom respectively, making sales of about 23 million iPhones in China over the last year, this got China Mobile warming up to the deal in a quest to get back its customers from the competitors who offered the brand.
Analysts however say Apple may have to cut the price further, or introduce another, less expensive model if it hopes to broaden its appeal in china since unlike its former market; Chinese market is cost-conscious.
The partnership follows the recent announcement of China Mobile’s upgrade to 4G network a faster system for its subscribers.