iPhone 5 concept render that briefly appeared on the website of Danish carrier 3.dk.
After we learned that Deutsche Telekom in Germany began accepting early reservations for Apple’s next iPhone model, a carrier in China is pulling a similar maneuver. According to a local report by Southern Metropolis Daily (via The Next Web and CapitalVue), China Telecom set aside 1.5 billion yuan (about $234.5 million) in marketing expenses for iPhone 5 launch. They refer to this as a ‘Dragon Plan’ and local branches are already preparing for the handset’s arrival with staff training and in-store advertising. For example, one local office already installed a LED screen advertising iPhone 5.
The story has it that China Telecom will take orders from end of September. Official sales will begin in October, sources claim. Foxconn, Apple’s contract manufacturer, is said to have increased iPhone 5 output to 150,000 units, enough to flood the market with 5-6 million iPhone 5s in September. Shares of China Telecom climbed 0.41 percent today on the news. Reuters previously claimed that iPhone is arriving to China Telecom and officials confirmed they had approached Apple with the idea of bringing a CDMA version of the iconic handset to its customers. 9to5Mac previously learned from sources that Apple will take pre-orders for its next iPhone beginning September 30 in the United States.
China Unicom is currently Apple’s only iPhone distributor in the country. While Apple thus far left the 1.33 billion people market largely untapped, the next iPhone is expected to launch on both China Mobile and China Telecom, in addition to China Unicom. China Mobile had 584 million mobile phone subscribers in December last year and China Telecom had in the first half of this year zoomed past Verizon Wireless to become the world’s largest CDMA operator, with a total of 108 million subscribers. Southern Metropolis Daily is a daily tabloid distributed mainly in the Pearl River Delta area, which contains Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Hong Kong and Macau. It’s provocative, investigative journalism often gets it into hot water with the authorities. The paper is part of the huge Souther Media Group.