Archive for the ‘iPhone Hong Kong’ Category

More background about WiFi/WAPI on iPhone in China:

Here is iPhonAsia’s reply to CNET Asia article – iPhone finally coming to China, but who cares?

idannyb says…

Hi Ryan,

wifi-music-store-header1While all signs point to no WiFi on the “official” iPhone for China, there is a chance that Apple will submit a dual WAPI/WiFi model that would meet China’s requirements. Yet I’ll concede that this is a long shot.

Based on purported insider leaks to China’s tech press in March, Apple submitted two models for testing – one with WiFi and one without. Yet based on everything that I’ve read, China’s MIIT has allowed only one model to continue through the testing process – Model A1324. This appears to be a new Apple iPhone developed for the China market. It may come preloaded with several “for China” apps (e.g. Youku, Hanwang’s HWPen, etc) but it will most likely come sans WiFi.

Interfax TMT reported on April 7 that Apple had agreed to provide a majority share of App Store revenue to China Unicom. This leads me to believe that China Unicom has agreed to allow Apple to control delivery of wireless value added services (WVAS) and will allow iPhones to load apps via Apple’s China App Store (vs the app store that China Unicom will soon launch). I would imagine that as part of the negotiation quid-pro-quo, China Unicom will agree to pay a modest per unit subsidy and that the official iPhone will be priced significantly lower than grey market iPhones coming in from Hong Kong.

One item of note is that the iPhone 3GS has now landed in Hong Kong (July 10) and the SIM unlocked version can now be ordered through Apple’s HK Online Store. I’ve heard reports that the SIM unlocked models were sold out in a matter of hours. But not to worry, they’ll (Apple/Hon Hai) soon make more. SIM unlocked models must be shipped to a Hong Kong address. Too bad they need to swim across the channel and then back again.

SIM unlocked iPhone 3GS for 16GB HKD 5,388 ($695 US) and 32GB HKD 6,288 ($811 US) respectively.

In addition to Model A1324, I’m holding out hope (pure speculation) for another new model iPhone later in 2010. This model would be a low-priced “2G only” iPhone and would be available to any China carrier (unlocked). This model would be aimed at prepaid wireless consumers in BRIC nations, particularly in China and India.

Thanks for your article and insights,

~ Dan Butterfield

Jul 13, 2009 05:37


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Picture 2The Apple Online Store Hong Kong is selling SIM unlocked iPhone 3GS for HKD 5,388 ($695 US) and HKD 6,288 ($811 US) respectively. That’s -HKD12  ($1.55 US cheaper) and +HKD88 ($11.35 US) difference to the iPhone 3G.

How many iPhone WiFi enabled 3GS will swim across the channel to the People’s Republic of China? Plenty! … Word to China’s MIIT – Issue a Network Access License to iPhone or you’ll soon have hundreds of thousands more non-WAPI iPhones in the mainland.

Picture 1

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The iPhone: maker (and breaker) of new business in China

by Bo Wang, Bokan Technologies

BEIJING – May 21, 2009: With over 18 million iPhones sold in more than 80 countries worldwide, the iPhone has yet to be formally released in mainland China. Despite this, the iPhone is a highly sought after and prized commodity in the Middle Kingdom, with a million iPhones in circulation and thousands more introduced into the domestic market on a weekly basis. 

HONG KONG-LIFESTYLE-ASIA-IT-APPLEApple’s tight control over international distribution channels and corresponding scarcity of the iPhone in markets where it has not been formally released has somewhat ironically been the main driving force behind its popularity in China. This scarcity, combined with the iPhone status symbol appeal in China has resulted in consumers being willing to spend a much larger proportion of their income on purchasing the iPhone. The iPhone has commanded up to 5000RMB, or $730US on the black market in Beijing. Taking GDP per capita into consideration, this would be the equivalent of paying $5700US for an iPhone in the United States.

Zhongguancun Plaza

Zhongguancun Plaza

In Zhongguancun, often referred to as the Silicon Valley of Beijing, the iPhone has spawned countless fledgling businesses and enterprises geared solely towards satisfying the insatiable demand of the urban populace for the iPhone. Local iPhone suppliers have had to be creative and fleet of foot in order to stay afloat with windows of opportunities for channels of supply usually being very short lived.

Since its release in mid 2007, the iPhone has been smuggled into China and Hong Kong through mail order from the United States using US residential addresses, or direct from New Zealand, where for a limited time iPhones were available in unlimited quantities (subject to availability).

HK shopkeeper selling iPhone 3G

HK shop selling iPhone 3G

As these channels have been exploited and supplies have run out or curtailed by Apple, businesses would often collapse only to rise from the ashes upon the discovery of fresh, untapped (and uncontrolled) sources.

Successfully sourcing and “importing” the iPhone into China is however only the first hurdle aspiring business owners hoping to jump on the iPhone bandwagon have had to surpass. iPhones sourced internationally more often than not need to be unlocked in order to be used on the local networks.

iphone_unlocked_2-thumb-1Chinese resourcefulness has really come into its own in this regard with specifically designed SIM card “jackets” that enable the iPhone to be used in China. Far from perfect, these one-stop solutions are often flawed causing the iPhone to freeze or stop functioning as it should. New releases of the iPhone with improved security controls have required further creativity and development on this front.

iphone-china-unicom-11Apple is said to be in negotiations with  China Unicom and China Mobile for distribution deals, with a formal release date anticipated before the end of the year. China Unicom appears to be the leading contender as its WCDMA network would require minimal modification to the iPhone. With less than half the number of subscribers compared to China Mobile, it is unlikely that China Unicom will be able to successfully negotiate a sole distribution arrangement.

Li Yizhong - MIIT VM

Li Yizhong - MIIT VM

Authorities have turned a blind eye to the local iPhone business to date, however it is likely that a formalized agreement between Apple and a large established Chinese company would have significant legal implications for local suppliers choosing to continue in this business.

Regardless of the details of the inevitable distribution deal, the iPhone will be a huge success for Apple in China. The booming black-market trade that has been built up around the iPhone will likely collapse as widespread availability would remove the scarcity factor, forcing local sellers to start looking for opportunities elsewhere. 末端

This  guest post was written by Bo Wang, CEO of Bokan Technologies. Bokan iPhone apps


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iPhone and Macbook visit Hong Kong

iPhone and Macbook visit Hong Kong


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iPhonAsia Comment: Terms and Conditions limit unlocked sales to Hong Kong residents only …. although Gray marketeers don’t always pay careful attention to T&Cs. Expect many more unlocked iPhone 3Gs to show up in Mainland China.  Note also that iPhone 3G is backward compatible to China Mobile’s EDGE 2.5 G network.

From a comment by Richard on Engadget: … “unlocked/jailbroken iPhones have been available for a long long time on the grey market in HK – a couple of weeks ago they were apparently going for approximately $6500 (8GB) or $7500 (16GB) – so this is going to gut the grey market completely.”


Unlocked iPhone now available in China

Via Apple website > HERE


Estimated Ship:Within 24hrs 

Free Shipping

HK$ 5,400


Estimated Ship:Within 24hrs 

Free Shipping

HK$ 6,200

iPhone 3G purchased at the Apple Online Store can be activated with any wireless carrier. Simply insert the SIM from your current phone into iPhone 3G and connect to iTunes 8 to complete activation.


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Asia underground market awaits iPhone


EXCERPT: HONG KONG (AP) — As Apple Inc. rolled out its newest iPhone in Asia on Friday, dealers and buyers said it’s only a matter of time — maybe as little as a few days — before the popular device hits the region’s thriving underground marketplace.

iPhones are nothing new to Asia, where enthusiasts from Bangkok to Shanghai already sport fake and unlocked models of the first generation, which was unveiled last year.

Full article > HERE

The first buyer in Hong Kong, Ho Kak-yin, holds his new iPhone during the first day of the release in Hong Kong, Friday July 11, 2008. As Apple rolled out its newest iPhone in Asia Friday, dealers and buyers said it’s only a matter of time – maybe as little as a few days – before the popular device hits the region’s thriving underground marketplace. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)



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