iPhone talks break down

By Wang Xing (China Daily)
Updated: 2008-01-15 09:58

China Mobile yesterday said it has ended talks with Apple Inc to introduce the iPhone in China, a breakdown that experts attributed to their differences over revenue sharing.

"Any deal needs compromises and I think the reason for the breakdown of talks between China Mobile and Apple was that both sides were not willing to make one," said Yu Yang, president of Analysys International, a domestic research firm focusing on the telecom industry.

Bloomberg yesterday reported the collapse in talks citing China Mobile's Hong Kong-based spokeswoman.

The latest development makes it difficult for Apple to sell its popular iPhone in the world's largest cellphone market, with 539 million mobile phone users, according to Ministry of Information Industry figures.

Gao Jianshu, director of China Mobile's data services, said in an industry forum on Saturday that China Mobile had rejected Apple's proposal of sharing 20 to 30 percent of China Mobile's revenues from iPhone users, according to Sina.com. But he had said the two companies were preparing for the next round of negotiations.

Apple started talks with China Mobile in November after iPhone made a spectacular debut in the US. But the company's insistence on sharing revenue with cellphone operators that may benefit from iPhone's popularity has now impaired its talks with China Mobile.

"I think Apple may be looking for opportunities after the restructuring of the telecom industry is completed," said Yu.

(For more biz stories, please visit Industry Updates)

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