On Friday, China Telecom, the country’s third biggest telecommunications company, said it would start selling the Xbox One in China from September, although no pricing details were revealed.
JD.com Inc, China’s second largest e-commerce company (by market share), confirmed it has started to accept pre-orders for the games console.
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According to Reuters, the pre-orders, which will run from July 28 to July 30, will be taken via Tencent Holdings’ mobile social networks Mobile QQ and WeChat, which is known as Weixin in China.
The all-in-one games and entertainment system will be the first of its kind to launch in China, and the first foreign games console since the government lifted a 14-year old ban on such devices in January. Console sales were banned in 2000 on the back of concerns that games were negatively affecting the mental health of players.
Although the recent uncoupling of the Kinect and resulting price cut has seen the Xbox One enjoy a healthy sales spike, rival Sony’s PlayStation 4 has consistently outsold it.
China is a potentially huge market for the Xbox One with an estimated half a billion people playing games. According to Microsoft that’s “roughly more than a third of the country’s population and more than the entire population of North America”.
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