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China Telecom to sell unlocked iPhone 6

China Telecom said it will unlock the next-generation iPhone by supporting the SIM cards of the other two major telecom players in the market.
Written by Cyrus Lee, Contributor on

China Telecom, China's third largest telecom players trailing behind China Mobile and China Unicom, announced on Monday that the version of the next-generation iPhone sold by the carrier is going to support all the wireless networks in the country.

In a Weibo tweet posted by China Telecom's Shanghai branch on Wednesday afternoon, the carrier said it will unlock the unreleased smartphone, meaning the upcoming iPhone 6 sold by China Telecom is going to support dual 4G network, both TDD-LTE and FDD-LTE, and a variety of other networks including WCDMA, CDMA2000, GSM, and CDMA1X, according to a Sina news report.

China Telecom Weibo capture, Sina news.

Currently, Apple's iPhone products from earlier 4S to latest 5S models sold by China Telecom only accepts SIM cards issued by the carrier as these models only support China Telecom's 3G CDMA2000 network and 2G CDMA network, according to the report.

The announcement came after a Tuesday report, revealing that next-generation iPhone version could support faster LTE connectivity as the device is expected to feature Qualcomm's MDM9625 LTE modem. It will make the upcoming kit compatible with LTE-A networks.

The Weibo tweet also came along with a capture of next-generation iPhones in three different colors, identical to iPhone 5 which are offered in black, silver, and gold.

However, China Telecom deleted the Weibo tweet subsequently, after being forwarded over 300 times by Chinese users.

Despite smartphone makers being able to make their kits operate on numberous of networks, the barriers set by the wireless players themselves remain the largest obstacle, according to a Chinese article, which regards China Telecom's unlocking plan as a move to “save market confidence.”

According to the latest operational figures issued by China Telecom on Wednesday, its cumulative mobile subscribers stood at 180 million in July, down 200,000 over the previous month, Yicai.com reported, which added China Telecom has lost 5.54 million users in the first seven months of 2014.

As 99 percent of 4G users in China belong to China Mobile, if China Telecom wants to make a difference, it needs to inject some confidence into the market, the Chinese article commented.

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