Thursday, 17 January 2008

No iPhone for China / Macbook Air

January 14, 2008

Apple, China Mobile Call Off iPhone Launch Talks


HONG KONG (Reuters) - Apple Inc and China Mobile have called off talks to launch the U.S. firm's popular iPhones in China, dashing speculation the device will hit the country's store shelves soon.

Shares in China Mobile, the world's largest cellular operator, sunk to an intraday low minutes after the news, sliding nearly 3 percent to HK$130.00 in late afternoon trade.

The iPhone, a cellphone that accesses the Internet and plays music, sells for about $500 in the United States -- about double the average monthly salary in China. News that the two telecoms giants were in talks over the device's potential launch in the world's largest telecoms arena helped Apple's stock climb more than 10 percent on November 13.

"Our parent has terminated talks with Apple over the iPhone," a spokeswoman for listed China Mobile said, confirming several unsourced Internet reports. She would not elaborate.

Experts said last year that the iPhone would have to navigate a spate of technical, content and fee issues unique to China, including a standard revenue-sharing agreement that China Mobile would be sure to dislike, before any launch could proceed.

The iPhones -- one of the hottest gadgets to hit U.S. and European stores in 2007 -- might also be incompatible with China because of their "locked" SIM cards. That meant the device would not be able to piggyback another operator's network.

It's unclear what Apple, which has declined to comment on the issue, planned now for China.

China Unicom, the smaller of the country's only two wireless carriers, said in 2007 it had no plans to bring the device into the country but was open to the idea.

Some say it doesn't matter anyway because you can buy an iPhone from the States and get it unlocked for use here, or get a fake iPhone here. Personally it doesn't really interest me that much.

and in other news.. the Macbook Air was released. The ultra slim, ultra light new laptop computer from Apple. It looks nice and all but it doesn't interest me either.

and look! someone is certainly quick off the mark. A manila envelope made of vinyl for your new Macbook Air.

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