China Mobile has yet to convince Apple to partner on an iPhone that supports its proprietary TD-SCDMA 3G network, but that hasn’t stopped the carrier from attracting customers to the device. In fact, China Mobile added 5 million new iPhone users in just four months, and it now serves a total of 9.5 million iPhone users, Bloomberg said. Each of those customers can use text, voice and 2G data, and all of the iPhone models it sells are unsubsidized. That may sound like a turnoff, but China Mobile has increased its iPhone user base by building out a nationwide Wi-Fi network to make up for its 3G shortcomings, and the carrier is also offering rebates worth as much as $440. The carrier plans to add an additional 1 million hotspots throughout China during the next three years, too. China Unicom has been an exclusive iPhone partner in China since 2005 and while it has less 3G subscribers than China Mobile, it is able to offer a 3G-capable iPhone because it operates a WCDMA 3G network. More →
Images of what could be a next generation iPhone headed to China Mobile have been re-published by Sohu.com. Is it the real deal? It might be. For one, it runs an unannounced baseband software (version 06.10.01), which could hint that Apple’s prepping support for China Mobile’s 3G TD-SCDMA network. Also, in June, a China Mobile employee said that the iPhone 5 would be arriving in September, and there have been reports of Apple’s COO Tim Cook sitting in meetings with China Mobile execs, which suggests that there’s definitely some relationship building going on. More →
The ZTE U990 (not to be confused with the LG U990), the world’s first high-end HSDPA-TD-SCDMA phone, has been unveiled by ZTE Corp. in China. Using HSDPA, the device is capable of transferring data at the rate of 2.8Mbps — not too shabby, and apparently the fastest capable on a TD-SCDMA network (a network which is quickly being built out in China). The upload speeds aren’t too bad, either, at 384kbps, so using data and browsing the ‘net on this device could be a pleasure if the processor doesn’t cause too much lag. The handset is sporting Windows Mobile 6.0, which most either love or hate, on a touch-screen interface. It also has A-GPS for globe trotters or anyone who’s easily lost, but it’s data support outside of its native network includes only EDGE… probably one of its only downsides, but we suppose it works in a pinch. Are any of our Chinese readers considering snagging one of these?