China Mobile's Xi Guohua, the Chairman of the world's largest carrier, has announced talks with Apple to finally close the iPhone deal. China Mobile's high official couldn't state for sure if the negotiations are going to be concluded this year, and he has remained rather reluctant to give any more details.
"China Mobile and Apple both have the will to strengthen cooperation. When there is more specific news, we will disclose it", Xi said. Xi Guohua only took up the position in March, taking over after his predecessor, Wang Jianzhou, who led the company for seven and a half years.
At his first shareholder meeting, Xi Guohua detailed the company's status. China Mobile is going to develop a widespread 4G wireless network, despite the fact that the carrier's sales have dropped by 3 per cent.
Investors are eager to back China Mobile's efforts to deploy 4G networks and the share value has climbed 12 per cent this year, as a result of this move. For China Mobile, the lack of the iPhone is still a burning issue, as the company's competitors are already carrying the mobile.
China Unicom and China Telecom are able to offer their subscribers Apples' handsets. In China, Samsung is still the leading phone company, but Apple's presence is growing and has now reached 19 per cent. This year, iPhone shipments in China are estimated to be around the 35 million mark.