Chinese iPhone Announcement Tomorrow?
If Apple hasn’t already signed a deal to bring the iPhone to China, it’s getting damn close. Sources tell Reuters that China Unicom may announce the rumored agreement as soon as tomorrow. Chinese news portal 163.com has also heard that the deal’s been signed, as has labs.chinamobile.com, which insists that the two companies concluded negotiations 10 days ago. Add to this the fact that China Unicom is scheduled to post financials tomorrow and a company spokesperson’s claim that the iPhone will “undoubtedly” be a topic of conversation and an official announcement seems a possibility, if not an outright certainty.
That said, it’s also entirely possible that there will be no official announcement tomorrow. After all, we’ve been hearing reports like those above about the Apple (AAPL) iPhone in China for quite a while now and these negotiations are quite complex. As Dan Butterfield at iPhonAsia notes, “I am skeptical that an Apple/China Unicom iPhone deal announcement will come on Friday as there are likely two iPhones in the approval pipeline–models A1324 and A1325. The WiFi enabled model (A1325) may still be in CTTL testing and Apple may not want to make a deal official until both iPhones have received their network access licenses, which could take another month or so.”