Apple Secures China Mobile Network License, But Not Consumer Satisfaction
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) had good news to share Wednesday morning when the Chinese government finally approved its new iPhones to run on China Mobile Ltd.’s mobile network, the world’s largest wireless operator. Apple and China Mobile have been in negotiations for years over whether Apple would make an iPhone compatible with China Mobile’s third-generation network, and now that Apple has finally been granted the license to run the handset on the carrier’s next-generation network, the iPhone giant is one step closer to finally securing a deal with China Mobile.
This reflects significant progress for Apple in China because although the country represents the world’s largest smartphone market, Apple has struggled to increase its presence there due to regulatory obstacles and difficulties that major networks like China Mobile put forward. According to The Wall Street Journal, China Mobile has more than seven times the subscriber base of the U.S. largest wireless operator Verizon Wireless with 700 million users, and that’s why it is so important that Apple has access to these customers.
Up until recently, the exclusive mobile network was not able to sell the iPhone because of China’s proprietary network standard, and Apple was thus losing out on considerable sum of customers. However, now, Apple is significantly closer to securing its foot in China’s mobile market, because not only did the Chinese government approve the handsets to run on China Mobile’s network, but China Mobile’s rivals China Unicom and China Telecom were also granted the support.