Last week, we reported that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has finally reached an agreement with China Mobile. The Chinese telecom giant will start taking preorders for the iPhones on Thursday, Dec.12, according to an ad on China Mobile’s website. The world’s largest telecom operator with more than 759 million subscribers has also won the high-speed 4G license in China.
Pricing plan for Apple devices
According to Lorraine Luk of the Wall Street Journal, China Mobile’s ad with “4G Is Here!” slogan announced that potential customers can preorder the iPhone 5S starting Thursday. People can also preorder smartphones from Samsung Electronics Co Ltd (KRX:005930) (LON:BC94) and Sony Corp. (NYSE:SNE) (TYO:6758) that support 4G services. Interested customers can order online or through select branches in Shanghai.
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China Mobile is currently working on a pricing plan for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s devices. The Chinese company will likely unveil its 4G services on December 18 during a conference in Guangzhou. China Mobile has so far only offered 3G services. But the company has been losing customers to rivals China Telecom and China Unicom that have already added iPhones to their offerings. China Mobile plans to expand its 4G services rapidly. The company expects the iPhones to help attract more customers. The company will initially offer 4G services in the cities of Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou, Shenzen, Tianjian and Nanjing.
China Mobile could boost Apple’s revenue by $10 billion
Experts say that China Mobile could easily add at least $10 billion to Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s annual revenues. The Cupertino-based company has reportedly asked its partner Foxconn to ramp up production of iPhone 5S. It has reduced the wait time from 2-4 weeks initially to 1-3 days now. This indicates that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) expects heavy demand from China Mobile customers.
China Mobile currently has about 176 million 3G subscribers. RBC Capital Markets analyst Amit Daryanani expects Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) to attract about 10% of those customers through 2014. That would mean about 17 million iPhone sales from China Mobile alone, which would add close to $3 in Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s annual earnings.
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) shares surged 0.46% to $562.58 in pre-market trading Monday.