Confirmed. China Mobile already has 45 million iPhones on its network

Apple’s China Mobile deal is as good as done. iPhone5S and iPhone 5C will launch on the world’s biggest carrier this week. Even without an official announcement, China Mobile has the new iPhone promotion/pre-registration page running for several days already.

Why  is everybody making such a big deal about China Mobile iPhone? Because of the sheer size of it. In early September we told you that China’s biggest carrier already had 42 million iPhone customers on its network. None of those customers were able to access CM’s proprietary 3G TD-SCDMA, and had to rely on the slow 2G GPRS/EDGE or Wi-Fi to deliver their data. Now that number has been confirmed and updated by Reuters.

According to the news agency, China Mobile now says that it has 45 million iPhone users. All of them still unofficial, stuck on GPRS/EDGE. How many of them, do you think, will rush to upgrade the first day iPhone 5S is offered by their carrier? Especially with those big subsidies we told you about last week.

iPhone China Mobile official promotion

Most analyst estimates put the iPhone gains to around 17-20 million units from China Mobile deal. Which, to me, sounds way too conservative. Even if half of the current CM iPhone user base upgrades their handsets to 4G capable devices with in a year, we are already looking at 22.5 million new iPhone sales.

Add the new customers heavy promotions and subsidies will bring as soon as China Mobile iPhone 5S is announced, and 30 million+ sold within next 12 months is a very real possibility.

Via:  Reuters

Author: Stasys Bielinis

While I like to play with the latest gadgets, I am even more interested in broad technology trends. With mobile now taking over the world - following the latest technology news, looking for insights, sharing and discussing them with passionate audience - it's hard to imagine a better place for me to be. You can find me on Twitter as @UVStaska'

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  • Below$550AShareIsPathetic!}:-D

    It’s better the analysts are conservative at this point. There’s no way to accurately gauge how well the iPhone will sell. It’s mostly just guesswork since there’s been no official announcement from Apple or China Mobile. I don’t know what’s taking them so long but I guess it will happen eventually this year or next. I’m not counting chickens before they’re hatched. Apple moves at a snail’s pace so I’m not getting my hopes up for this year.

  • Mel Gross

    30 million does seem to be somewhat over the top right now. I’m seeing estimates as low as 12 million. But, we’ll see. I’m hoping it will do well there, and it should. It’s hard to imagine that so many would be willing to give up 3G in order to use that phone. But then, there were over a million and a half on T-Mobile’s network that couldn’t use 3G either, and that only had 33 million subscribers.