China Unicom is currently Apple go to carrier in China, and the deal between the Chinese network provider and Apple has proven to be very lucrative with over 10 million unlocked iPhones currently in use on the Chinese market, however China’s largest carrier, China Mobile, still have their eye on a piece of the (Apple) pie.
It is rumored that Apple had a special version of the iPhone 4S in testing in China, which would run on China Mobiles self developed TD-SCDMA network, however it seems Apple have decided to dump the TD-SCDMA iPhone and instead begin work on a 4G TD-LTE iPhone instead.
China Mobile Users Don’t Panic!
If you are on China Mobile and are now worried that you won’t be able to use the new iPhone 4S with your phone number, don’t!
Unlocked iPhone 4S’s (all of the official iPhone 4S in China once they are launched) will still work on any of China’s 3G networks, but what it does mean is that China Mobile won’t be getting their own iPhone 4S, unlike China Unicom and possibly China Telecom.
Reasons for the lack of China Mobile version of an iPhone 4S have not been confirmed, but it has been suggest that the carrier insisted on getting a percentage from iTunes sale, the same reason they missed out on the iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4 when they came to China.