iPhone market share continues to fall, but it’s Samsung feeling the pressure

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While Android reaching almost 70 percent of smartphone sales across 12 key markets is the headline, with iOS falling to just under 24 percent, it is Samsung feeling the pressure, says Kantar, reporting sales figures for the final quarter of 2013.

After years of accelerated growth, Samsung is now coming under real pressure in most regions, with European share down by 2.2 percentage points to 40.3% and in China its share ended the year flat at 23.7% [...]

Apple has lost share in most countries compared with this time last year, but importantly it has held strong shares in key markets including 43.9% in USA, 29.9% in Great Britain and 19.0% in China …  Read more

China Mobile iPhone launch could lead to subsidy wars, say analysts

Image: thenextweb.com

Image: thenextweb.com

Analysts say that the official launch of the iPhone on China Mobile could lead to subsidy wars as Chinese carriers compete to attract buyers. The predictions, quoted by Business Insider, follow price cuts by rival carriers China Unicom and China Telecom as China Mobile reports 1.2 million pre-orders.

China Mobile is currently offering the iPhone 5s free with a 24-month contract costing the equivalent of $98 a month. A 30-month contract on China Unicom costs $63 a month.

I do think you’re going to see a subsidy war coming,” said Michael Clendenin, managing director of Shanghai-based RedTech Advisors. “China Mobile, if they’re not making their targets on sales for these phones, they’re going to increase the subsidies [...] It’s like airlines: the other guys will fall like dominoes, so China Unicom will do it and China Telecom will do it” …  Read more

Apple CEO Cook hands out autographed iPhones at China Mobile launch, says ‘great things’ coming

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As planned, iPhone sales have started via China Mobile, the largest carrier in China, today. The official iPhone China Mobile deal, which covers both the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c, was announced in December. Earlier this week, Apple CEO Tim Cook promoted the event with multiple interviews, calling the partnership a “beginning.” Subsequent reports indicated that millions of iPhones have already been ordered through China Mobile…

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In rare TV interview, Tim Cook says he is ‘honored’ to be doing business with China Mobile

In a rare TV interview, Tim Cook described this week’s launch of the iPhone on China Mobile as “a watershed day” for the company. While the soft-spoken Apple CEO is noted for the humbleness with which he speaks, it’s hard to imagine him describing Apple as being “honored” to do business with many other companies.

I’m so honored to be doing business with … China Mobile. It’s a huge announcement…we’re incredibly impressed with them, we have deep respect for them, and have had from the very first discussion that we’ve had together” …  Read more

Apple Asia online stores offer deals on iPhones, iPads, & Macs for Lunar New Year sale

 

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Earlier this week we told you that Apple had announced an upcoming sale in many of its Asian online stores to celebrate the Chinese Lunar New Year taking place at the end of January. The sales see Apple offering discounts in China, Thailand, Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Malaysia online stores similar to deals on offer for Black Friday in the US and other countries.

This year Apple is offering cash discounts on the usual products— up to $40 off iPads, $100 off Macs, and smaller discounts on iPods and Smart Covers— it’s also offering a rare discount on iPhones at around $50 off both the iPhone 5s and 5c. In addition, a much larger selection of accessories are on sale compared to the company’s Black Friday sale including popular products from Parrot, Apogee, Belkin, LaCie, and Apple.

Apple opens official online store through Chinese e-commerce site Tmall

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Apple has launched a new online store through Tmall, a Chinese popular e-commerce site Tmall, reports the Wall Street Journal. Tmall, which is owned by the Alibaba Group, is already home to thousands of official retail outlets for other brands, such as Nike. The new storefront will not replace Apple’s own first-party store, but will instead complement it.

Like the store on Apple’s website, the Tmall store will be participating in Apple’s “Red Friday” sales event later this week. Unlike Apple’s eBay store in the United States, the Tmall site sells brand-new products rather than refurbished ones.

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AAPL stock more than 3 percent up on China Mobile news

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After the fall in Apple’s stock value when the China Mobile failed to materialise as expected on 18th December, yesterday’s news that the deal had finally been concluded sent the stock shooting back up again, having climbed more than 3 percent at the time of writing (it was up 4% in pre-market trading but has settled).

With the WSJ having reported that 18th December was the day, the market was clearly jittery when nothing materialized. Everything had appeared to be in place: regulatory approval, Apple putting the handsets on sale in China on the opening weekend, China Mobile posters, a pre-order website, in-store displays – and 4G service up-and-running on schedule …  Read more

Delayed China Mobile iPhone launch may be due to renegotiations based on 5c vs 5s sales

Photo: arstechnica.net

Photo: arstechnica.net

KGI’s Mingchi Kuo has suggested in a note to investors that the mystery of the apparent delay in the iPhone launching on the world’s largest carrier, China Mobile, may be due to last-minute renegotiations with Apple on volume discounts across the two new models.

We believe weak sales of iPhone 5C may trigger a re-negotiation of the Apple-China Mobile partnership. While previously we estimated that Apple originally planned the TD-LTE version would account for 30% of total iPhone 5C shipments, our latest survey indicates that demand for the TD-LTE iPhone 5C has declined dramatically due to 5S being far more popular than 5C among China Mobile subscribers [...]

We believe this would necessitate a re-negotiation of the Apple-China Mobile deal and therefore defer its finalization …

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AAPL stock down as market ponders the mystery of the missing China Mobile deal

chinamobile

AAPL stock took a 1.8 percent hit in pre-market trading as China Mobile not only failed to announce its iPhone launch today as had been expected, but its chairman Xi Guohua specifically told reporters that the world’s largest carrier had no announcement to make.

While neither Apple nor China Mobile ever officially confirmed today as the launch date, the Chinese government confirmed the date as the one on which 4G service would begin, China Mobile had said it would launch “a new brand” today and the WSJ seemed confident last month that today was the day.

The deal has been a very long time in the coming, but all the pieces of the puzzle looked to have fallen into place …  Read more

iPhone market share in China more than doubled following 5s and 5c launch

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Data from smartphone market intelligence specialist Counterpoint shows that iPhone market share in China more than doubled between September and October even before launching on the country’s biggest carrier, China Mobile.

Apple’s market share rose from just under 5 percent to 12 percent, taking it from 6th place to 3rd place, behind Samsung and Lenovo …  Read more

Pegatron faces renewed labor scrutiny after death of under-age worker at iPhone 5c factory [Updated]

China Foxconn

Update: Apple has issued a statement stating that it sent medical experts to investigate and found no link to the boy’s employment. It has not commented on the fact that the worker was under-age, but it has been revealed that he used his 21-year-old cousin’s ID to get the job.

Last month we sent independent medical experts from the U.S. and China to conduct an investigation of the (Pegatron) factory. While they have found no evidence of any link to working conditions there, we realize that is of little comfort to the families who have lost their loved ones.

Apple has a long-standing commitment to providing a safe and healthy workplace for every worker in our supply chain, and we have a team working with Pegatron at their facility to ensure that conditions meet our high standards.

Original story:

China Labor Watch says Pegatron has failed to properly explain the deaths of five young workers at a factory making the iPhone 5c, including one who was found to be just 15 years old, reports the Sydney Morning Herald.

Pegatron, the Taiwanese manufacturer that employed him, said the workplace environment at the Shanghai plant was not the cause of his illness. But a spokeswoman acknowledged that several other young workers at the factory had also died in the past few months [...]

“Considering the sudden deaths of five people and the similar reason of the deaths, we believe there should be some relations between the tragedy and the working conditions in the factory,” said Li Qiang, who runs China Labor Watch …  Read more

WSJ: Apple and China Mobile strike a deal, iPhone finally headed to world’s largest mobile carrier around Dec. 18

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The Wall Street Journal reports that Apple has finally reached an agreement with China Mobile to carry the iPhone. China Mobile is currently the world’s largest mobile carrier with well over 700 million subscribers. Yesterday a subsidiary of the carrier started taking pre-orders for the smartphone, though the page was quickly pulled from its website.

In September the advertisment above leaked to the media. The image is a promotion for the iPhone 5s and 5c running on China Mobile’s network. The Chinese government, which controls China Mobile, confirmed that the phone would be available on December 18th last month, although neither Apple nor China Mobile would actually confirm the rumor.