This Telecom Giant Paid Nothing for 10 Million iPhone Users

China Mobile (NYSE:CHL), the world’s largest mobile carrier by subscribers, has 10 million iPhone users. That’s a ton because Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) promised to make an iPhone compatible with China Mobile’s TD-LTE standard when its next-generation model comes out, but does not yet have an agreement to do so, chairman Wang Jianzhou told Reuters.

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China Mobile (NYSE:CHL) had more than 630 million customers at the end of September. But China’s (NYSE:FXI) three carriers have been hurt by falling average revenue per user because they subsidized handsets from Samsung and HTC in order to attract smartphone users to more expensive plans.

In China, only China Unicom (NYSE:CHU) has the iPhone so far. However, thanks to Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) network of stores in the country, Wang said China Mobile was already benefiting to some extent from the iPhone. “The total number of iPhones in China Mobile’s (NYSE:CHL) network has reached 10 million — and we didn’t pay any subsidies,” he told to Reuters.

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