Leaks suggest China Mobile-Apple deal imminent

Fiona Chau

China Mobile may soon debut Apple’s new iPhones, as alleged leaked posters circulating online suggest that the company is preparing an advertising campaign about how it will have “the strongest iPhone” in China.

The posters, which are reportedly circulating on microblogging sites and believed to originate from provincial branches of China Mobile, suggest that the new iPhone 5S and 5C will support both TD-SCDMA and TD-LTE, Chinese online portal MyDrivers.com says.

This is another indication that Apple and China Mobile either have or are very close to reaching a partnership deal. Earlier China’s Telecom Equipment Certification Center granted Apple's two new iPhones a network access license for China Mobile’s 3G and 4G networks.

MyDrivers.com reports that testing could occur in September and October, with November being the earliest possible launch timeframe on China Mobile’s 4G LTE network.

This obviously spells good news for both China Mobile and Apple. The deal would clear the way for China Mobile and Apple to sell iPhones directly to the operator's 700 million mobile customers.

Separately China Mobile said it will team up with Samsung on the development of VoLTE as the two companies launched the TD-SCMDA variant of Samsung Galaxy Note 3 N9008 smartphone on Tuesday.

Samsung said the company will also soon launch support of TD-LTE 4G version for the Samsung GALAXY Note3, and an upgraded version that supports VoLTE depending on market demand.

The two companies also agreed to jointly cooperate and launch VoLTE international standards based on 3GPP trial commercial phone.

This follows the joint launch of the GALAXY Note II (GT-N7108D), Samsung’s commercial 4G/TD-LTE smartphone for China Mobile. The phone has been used recently by Samsung to make VoLTE voice call via its IMS solution, and will be used continuously follow-up of China Mobile scale field testing of VoLTE, the company said.

 

Commentary

5G and data center-friendly network architectures

Matt Walker / MTN Consulting

Webscale and transmission network operators' interests are aligning as the 5G era dawns

Matt Walker / MTN Consulting

Webscale and transmission network operators' interests are aligning as the 5G era dawns

Rémy Pascal / Analysys Mason

The launch of 5G by South Korean operators serves as a first benchmark for other operators around the world