It looks like the iPhone 5 will be coming to China soon as it receives approval for a “network access” license in China, one of Apple’s largest markets. The phone is compatible with the network standard supported by China’s third-largest mobile carrier, China Telecom Corp, indicating it is another step closer to offering the iPhone 5 in China.
Two iPhone models received the necessary network access licenses from China’s Telecommunications Equipment and Certification Center (TENAA). Usually within weeks of this approval, vendors in China begin selling the new handset. Previously, the two models had received approval from a number of Chinese regulatory bodies in September and October.
China Telecom chairman, Wang Xioachu, told the Wall Street Journal that the company is hoping to begin offering the iPhone 5 by early December. Licenses have reportedly been approved for the iPhone to be supported by China Telecom and China Unicom.
The iPhone 5 has been going through the Chinese approval process for months. Apple hasn’t given a specific release date, but said the iPhone 5 will be available in 100 countries on 240 carriers by December. Analysts say iPhone 5’s launch delay in China is partially due to Apple’s need to meet demand in the U.S. market as well as the country-specific tests and licensing that is necessary for a company to release a smartphone in China.
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