Hot on the heels of getting regulatory approval form Chinese authorities for its devices, Apple today announced that the iPad mini and the iPad 4 will be going on sale in the region starting December 7th, while the iPhone 5 will arrive in the region a week later on December 14th.
Here’s the relevant portion from Apple’s Press Release announcing the news:
Apple® today announced the Wi-Fi versions of iPad® mini and fourth generation iPad with Retina™ display will be available in China on Friday, December 7, and iPhone® 5 will be available on Friday, December 14. iPad mini and the new fourth generation iPad with Retina display are currently available in 42 countries, and iPhone 5 is available in 47 countries, including the US, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Japan and the UK.
If you remember, this figure of 47 countries isn’t even halfway through Apple’s goal of getting the iPhone 5 to hundred countries by the end of this year. A Taiwanese news report from a few days back suggests that along with China, even Taiwan, and possibly several other nations, might get the iPhone 5 on December 14th.
Apple notes that the iPhone 5 will be available for purchase in China from the Apple online store, authorised releasers and (by reservation) from Apple retail stores. While the Press Release has no mention of the carriers who will offer the device, we know from past reports that China Telecom and China Unicom will be carrying the device. China Telecom, had in fact started already taking pre-orders for the iPhone 5, even before Apple’s official announcement.
Apple will only be selling the Wi-Fi version of both the iPads in China.
Analysts found that iPad shipments to China nearly doubled following Apple’s settlement with Proview for the iPad trademark. This growth is expected to continue, or even increase, following the launch of the new iPad models in the country.