Update – June 12, 2009: Interfax TMT reporter Cindy Geng (who has good China telecom sources) reports the following – Beijing. June 11. INTERFAX-CHINA –
“A version of Apple’s iPhone lacking Wi-Fi capability has made progress towards obtaining a Network Access License (NAL) from the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), although a trademark dispute could set back its launch, sources told Interfax on June 11.
A China Unicom marketing employee, who asked not to be identified, said that the Wi-Fi-disabled iPhone had passed the tests of the State Radio Monitoring Center and obtained a five-year valid Radio Transmission Equipment Type Approval Certificate (RTETAC), which is one of the requirements for getting MIIT’s NAL. The model submitted for testing was compatible with GSM, WCDMA and Bluetooth, although it lacked Wi-Fi, according to the source.
Interfax previously reported that Apple prepared both Wi-Fi and non-Wi-Fi iPhones for the tests, as under Chinese regulations, Wi-Fi phones can only be granted NALs if they are also capable of the Chinese-developed wireless technology, WAPI (WLAN Authentication and Privacy Infrastructure).
The China Unicom marketing employee said that the iPhone still has a number of tests to pass before it can receive an NAL, including electromagnetic interference, trial operation, China Compulsory Certification tests, local support and after-sales support system evaluations and many others.”
Read more via > Cindy Geng’s report on Interfax TMT
Update – June 11, 2009: For several months now, iPhonAsia has read purported “insider leaks” about iPhone network testing in major Chinese provinces (Unicom testing iPhone in Henan and Heibei?). From what we heard, iPhone 3G was passing these unofficial WCDMA 3G network tests (conducted by Apple and China Unicom engineers in prep for formal MIIT tests) with flying colors. Moreover, there are now current iPhone 3G owners in China who have begun using China Unicom’s new WCDMA network with no reported problems.
Despite these unofficial reports, we’ve now hearing from MIIT’s China Telecommunication Technology Labs (CTTL). In response to media inquiries, CTTL clarified that Apple’s iPhone has received only one (1) of the two (2) required MIIT licenses:
- Issued (five-year model approval) – Radio Transmission Equipment Type Approval Certificate (RTETAC)
- Pending – Network Access License (NAL)
So what gives? There could be many reasons for MIIT holding up iPhone’s Network Access License (NAL), such as Apple submitting a special new iPhone model for China with WAPI encryption? It could also be that “parties” have requested that MIIT not reveal the iPhone NAL until the formal Apple/Unicom deal has been announced? Or something under the “other” category? It’s all just guesswork for now. We’ll update this post when we learn more.
MIIT approves iPhone for sale in China??
June 11, 2008 – If my source is correct, China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) has quietly approved the iPhone 3GS (or special China version). MIIT approval is a key prerequisite to iPhone’s official launch in China. I should stress that this is unofficial news …
“iPhone has already passed various tests, and approved to be sold in China on May 7th 2009. Approval number 2009-1996, device code 2009CJ1996.”
Source: Beijing-based telecom source anonymous by request. More via June 10 QQ report (in Mandarin – use Google translate) > here