One day after sending out invites to press in the US for its iPhone event scheduled for September 10 in Cupertino, Apple has just sent invites to Chinese media outlets inviting press to a special event in Beijing on September 11. Attached to the invite (above) is the same image and tagline hinting at iPhones in various colors that Apple included on the invites for its US event. Not only will it be the first time Apple hosts such an event in China, it is also a good indication that China Mobile, the world’s largest telecom, could soon finally announce a deal with Apple to bring the iPhone to its approximately 700M subscribers.

Last month China Mobile’s chairman said the company was still working out “commercial and technical issues” with Apple but that “good progress was made in preparing for the commercialization of TD-LTE.” Following that report, the often reliable KGI analyst Mingchi Kuo said that Apple was ramping up TDD-LTE supported iPhone models earlier than expected. The new low-cost iPhone, alongside a higher-end next-gen iPhone on China Mobile could help Apple add some significant numbers to its shipments heading into the new year. Kuo said the new devices on China Mobile could possibly account for penetration of 25% and 35% in iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C shipments with around 1.5-2.5M units. That prediction is for Q3 alone, as Kuo expects  even more units to ship as we move into China’s October Golden Holiday and Q4.

On September 10, Apple is expected to launch a new ‘iPhone 5S’ as a full-fledged upgrade to its current iPhone 5 that we reported will include a fingerprint reader, 128GB storage option, and a new gold color option. While that gold color option could help Apple move units to the high-end market in China and India where the color is popular, it’s also expected to debut a brand-new lower-cost iPhone (5C?) that analysts expect will sell for somewhere between $300 – $500. We’ll have to wait for official word from Apple to find out what will happen to its current lineup of iPhones, but it’s likely the company will keep the current iPhone 5, or possibly the iPhone 4S, around as a entry level model largely aimed at the enterprise market like the iPad 2.

Apple’s event in Beijing, China is set to kick off on Sept 11 at 10:00 AM local time (CST), but with the time difference the US and Beijing events will be only hours apart. 

Update: ATD is reporting that satellite events will also be held in Berlin and Tokyo, suggesting Apple will be pushing for this keynote to be a global event.

Also of note, it may be that the event in China may be more than just a simple livestream:

(Thanks Khaos Tian!)

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9 Responses to “Apple sends invites to Chinese media for special Sept. 11 event fueling China Mobile iPhone launch rumors [Update: events in Tokyo and Berlin as well]”

  1. It should be noted that after time zone differences, both events take place on the 11th in China – the same day, hours apart.


  2. iPhone 5c is going to be a blast in China


  3. I’d like to predict that Apple’s fall device lineup will be (non-publicly) driven by moving all products to lightning adapters, something that hasn’t been mentioned much recently in tech media. This will be done to hasten users and accessory makers’ transition to lightning and simplify development for the 4″ screen size rather than flexible apps that support UI for both.

    Apple will continue their $199 / $99 / Free-with-contract product lineup, but instead of the 4S being the free phone in this lineup, Apple will use the 5C. So it’ll be 5S / 5 / 5C respectively, moving all products to lightning. All phones sold globally after September 2013 will sport the lightning adapter. Note they’ll also all have the longer 4″ screen.

    This one’s a bit easier: iPad 5 starting at $499 and iPad 4 moved to $399 (and maybe cheaper for education). Mini has always been lightning, so if Apple offers a slightly cheaper earlier version of the iPad Mini ($289?) as they do with iPad, this won’t have any impact.

    The iPod lineup is already lightning except for the shuffle and the classic. The shuffle already connects via the headphone jack, and the classic will likely get discontinued or moved to lightning.


  4. iphone 5C for CHINA, not a global launch for the 5C im afraid


    • Tim Clayton says:

      iphone 5C for color will be released worldwide. Apple wouldn’t have the tagline “this should brighten everyones day along with that colorful poster for the US event just for a black/white and maybe bronze iphone 5S and iOS7 launch


  5. C is for china, and that’s good enough for me. C is for china, thats good enough for me!
    Apple batter not taint us rich westerners with cheap phones.


  6. maulana1933 says:



  7. Can anyone tell us where we can see a live blog of the Beijing event in a few hours???