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Archive for April 13th, 2009

Update – April 24, 2009: Interfax TMT has now picked up this story - Shanghai. April 24. INTERFAX-CHINA – Electronics retailer Best Buy Co. Inc. intends to cooperate with China Unicom on introducing Apple’s iPhone to China, the CEO of Best Buy International told Interfax on April 24, despite Apple and China Unicom having yet to reach an agreement on the matter. Read details > HERE

China’s Five Star Appliance signs distribution deal with Apple

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4429250px-bestbuysh-711725On February 21, 2009 Best Buy acquired a 100% stake in Five Star Appliance for $185 million USD. Today, the Jiangsu-based Five Star Appliance announced a deal with Apple to become a primary distributor of Apple products in China. Under terms of the deal, the “store-within-a-store” concept will be deployed in 40 top Five Star Appliance retail stores in China.

The first five Apple “stores-within-a-store” will open during the upcoming Labor Day holiday on May 1, 2009. The 2302421169_529ce75a51first locations will be:

  • Nanjing Xinjiekou Store
  • Wuxi Shenglimen Store
  • Suzhou Shilu Store
  • Hangzhou Wensanlu Store
  • Changzhou Guanhelu Store

By the end of September 2009, the 40 Apple stores-wthin-a-store will all be open for business. These stores also plan to set up quasi cyber cafés with Apple Macs providing shoppers with Internet access.

There were rumors earlier this year that Foxconn Group’s Cybermart would distribute Apple products in China. The Cybermart deal has been “officially denied” by Apple and Foxconn (parent of Hon Hai Precision, Apple’s primary manufacturing partner).  

Apple’s worldwide distribution is divided into four groups:

  1. Apple Stores (e.g. owned and operated by Apple – current China locations are in Sanlitun and soon in Qianmen)
  2. Apple Store-in-Store (ala Best Buy and now [soon] via 40 of Best Buy China’s Five Star Appliance stores)
  3. Apple Quality Distributor
  4. Apple Distributor

More on the Five Star Appliance deal with Apple > HERE

 

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花花公子 it’s a Dell TD Phone!

 

dell-dude-tbi-085x0851iPhonAsia comment: According to a report on Sina.com.cn, Dell is planning to build two new TD-SCDMA smartphones for China Mobile. Like several new customized TD smartphones (Levono, HTC, Nokia) being developed for China Mobile, the Dell phone mobile operating system (MOS) will be Android-based and specially coded to exclusively support China Mobile services. In other words, the operating system will be “proprietary” to China Mobile and it will be branded as “oPhone.” Good luck with that Dell … All new China Mobile 3G handsets will suffer under TD-SCDMA usability issues and China Mobile’s myopic focus on driving their own WVAS. Pre-loaded services on TD handsets will likely include China Mobile’s:
picture-3See video interview with China Mobile CEO Wang Jianzhou discussing China Mobile’s new MOS. Wang Jianzhou also mentions iPhone > HERE
More on China Mobile’s new app engine > HERE
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Dell Phone Launching In China? (DELL, CHL)

If true, probably a good move: China Mobile is a massive carrier with almost half a billion subscribers, and Dell’s U.S. rivals like Apple and RIM don’t have much of a foothold in China.

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