At the time when I am writing this on the messageboard, we still don't know whether Apple already has an agreement with China Mobile. I suspect it has secured that deal. A bigger question, however, if the new iPhone 5C for China includes TD-LTE support. Stay tuned.
Thanks for the link, Caleb. But of course, Apple still needs to "secure" an agreement with China Mobile. That was not announced at the press conference in Beijing, either. I suspect the sticking point between the point is how much of subsidies the operator [and manufacturer] are willing to cover.
Junko, that is indeed probably the main sticking point, though I would not be surprised if China Mobile also wants a slice of app revenue. Also, it is worth pointing out that the Apple/CM negotiations have been ongoing since at least 2009, with periodical rumors about an impending deal.
@pkandel, yes, I am in full agreement. I am not saying that this won't happen. But I am surprised that they couldn't get the deal done in time. I could easilly imagine the squabble must be in the financial arrangement -- how much for China Mobile to take and how much Apple is willing to go along.
But are there any other roadblocks standing in the way of the impending deal?
I heard at the ;launch Apple announced a deal to be used on Japan's DoCoMo net but not China Mobile asd of Sept. 10.
As for TD-SCDMA: This was a disappointment, hardly used outside China. China was much more proactoive and savvy with TD-LTE as a global standard used in many other countries so easier to get sislicon and systems support.
If I were Apple I might jump right from 3G to TD-LTE for China so the 5c may be a brigde product.
@Rick, China Mobile has made it clear, since the first time when they announced the TD-LTE rollout, new chips that go inside a China Mobile handset supporting TD-LTE must be multi-mode, multi-standards; meaning it has to support everything from 2G, 2.5G, 3G, TD-SCDMA, TD-LTE and any other variants. China Mobile is very ambitious to make the next-gen handset truly global.
Non contract price for iphone 5C is 549US$ for 16GB and 649$ for 32GB. I feel this may be quite high for china market. I thought they are planning to hit <400$ price point, which would have been attractive.
Oh! The non-contract price is too high...is the price $99/$199 with the subscription contract formally announced? I heard this news today from somebody (in India) who was watching the television and thought that Apple was brining low cost phones for the emerging markets (but did not really think that it would be available @ $99)....disappointed!! :( True, China is the only reason.
Not sure where Apple is going now. It is interesting to see them look up and down, left and right looking for growth with incremental innovations and products. Sure the Chinese market is a huge one but that is not a given. There are real competitors in that market and Apple will have to compete hard
The news also published in India stating iPhone at 100$, but it is with contract price in US and in India no telecom service provider has shown interest for iPhone 5c with contract. So one can not compare it with less prices Android Phone.
Yes Apple, Samsung, HTC and Sony will not be able to pitch the consumer demand and market in India and China as they are having a very high margins, a company like MicroMax is tending to beat Samsung with having 22% of Market Share as compared to 27% of Samsung in the last month sales figures. This is because of too much competitive prices offered by MicroMax. Also I think the production capacities of the giants is at their extents and as a result of that they are less willing to reduce the prices and increase sale.
I heard that the population of China recently reached the 1.4 billion mark. That's a gymongous market opportunity. It makes sense for Apple, and by the way also for the Hollywood studios, to mention two obvious industries, to make that market a primary concern of theirs.
Look at the flagship phone from Xiaomi. Only RMB 1999 for a gorgeous design, high-spec phone. And high-end phones from other Chinese local competitors, Lenovo, Oppo, Huawei, Meizhu etc. are all in similar price range. And yet Apple insanely priced the supposingly "budget" 5C at RMB 4488. It is not 2007, or 2011, or even 2012. iphone is not the only decent choice on the market.
Apple is forgetting their roots. Apple making a plastic 5C is like Mercedes Benz making a Tata Nano.
Apple's 5C strategy, if at all, should have been like the Mercedes-Benz C Class strategy. Drop some of the power/performance and size, but kept the user interface the same high quality.
Apple needs new innovative products--not chasing the price curve down. Their products need to be seen as a purchase goal for someone buying a cheap phone. Not everyone can afford an Apple. Even in China, the populace wants to "keep up with the Jones".
I've always loved t o read Yoshida's blog, but this one surprises me since it makes me think that 5c is a cheap phone to gain China/developing-country market. Actually it's not, at least from what has been disclosed.
As pointed in "priced too high", 5c is quite expensive indeed. The price is higher than Iphone5 if you check on China retailer webpage and is just 100$ less than 5s. And talking about contract, why don't people buy 5s? I don't think it's the "game changer" for Apple. As stated , it's designed for those who want some different/better Iphone5 with new colors, for young people.
Apple will try to get China market though, considering the size. The truth is, in China, people buy Iphone not because it's cheap. They buy it because it's really good and cool enough. People will save 1-2 months salary, for an Iphone. And Samsung successfully built up this high quality image too. That's why Samsung is the biggest competitor to Apple, while all others are not.
Unless they cut 5c price by half, Apple is still Apple. They are not going/able to compete with local vendors.
As per the news in the local newspaper in India the 5C version Iphone will not be cheap in India as the price of $99 is with service provider contract . Without the contract ( which is normally the case with Indian users) the price comes to around same as the earlier iPhone version.
Even in China the price of 5C without contract is actually more than the price of iPhone 5S as per the news.
So why a "cheap" tag is being attached to this product?
Most of the emerging market works on the model of prepaid phone model. There is never a discount from the model players. I do not see how this phone could be cheap in Africa and some emerging market where telcos do not subsidize. For Apple to stay on the growth path, it needs all these markets.
Apple, has it all. An awesome set of product portfolio, great OS and a great consumer base. Apple has always (and it will always be) focussed on niche products. iPhone 5C is no exception. As everyone else has pointed out, it is not a cheap product. I think we should not think of this product as India or China specific. And rightly said, contractual selling in India (and maybe China) does not make sense financially because of various issues. Anything Cheap, is not Apple. For example, they will never sell a Chromebook like product for the price of an iPod. So why this phone? People get bored of the color of phone, thats evident with the number of iPhone cases that sell. I think C stands for Color. They look cool. Remember the number of color iPods sold? The colored phones are a teaser for existing iPhone users to buy them. They already have iPhones, so they are financially sound. And they will think, hey this is cheap, let me buy. That is playing with mentality.
They have more or less just changed the packaging of iPhone 5, so they can reuse the iPhone 5 stuff like the PCBs and maybe all the chassis. Cheaper and more profitable for them
I think there is definitely a truth in there. And if Apple can continue to go down the path and remains profitable, more power to them. The question always comes down to: Do you want a market share, or are you happy being a supplier of coolest phones an average consumer in a specific region can't afford?
The problem I have with iPhone 5c is that it's not even the coolest phone. By offering it in five different colors, Apple clearly wants more market share appealing to the masses, but they are not willing to come down with prices that agree with the mass market.
@Junko,Apple will never make a product for such a mass market. It won't be Apple anymore. This was the belief of Late Steve Jobs too. And as I said earlier, I don't think 5C is supposed to take on mass market. They already have their market. They just want to sell more iPhones to the same people, its enough to make them richer.