Apple has announced the long rumored agreement with China Mobile, the world’s largest carrier, with sales of the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c to begin on January 17th, 2014. This is a multi-year deals that will allow China Mobile to begin offering the new iPhones at their network of retail stores, in addition to Apple’s retail stores across China. China Mobile is offering pre-registration for either iPhone starting on Wednesday, December 25th at their official website or via their customer service hotline.
“Apple’s iPhone is very much loved by millions of customers around the world. We know there are many China Mobile customers and potential new customers who are anxiously awaiting the incredible combination of iPhone on China Mobile’s leading network,” said Xi Guohua, China Mobile Chairman.
“Apple has enormous respect for China Mobile and we are excited to begin working together. 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 Tim Cook, Apple CEO.
Despite the massive market potential in China, Apple has fared particularly well due to a number of factors. Lower cost devices and the inability to finalize a deal with China’s largest carrier among them.China Mobile boasts a subscriber base of 740 million, seven times the size of Verizon, which holds the distinction of being the largest carrier in the US. Analysts predict sales in the area of 1.5 million per month, which would give Apple a yearly boost in sales of almost 20 million additional handsets.