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PCCW Seeks Judicial Review Into Apple IPhone 5 Network Block

Feb. 22 (Bloomberg) -- PCCW Ltd., which controls Hong Kong’s biggest telecommunications operator, applied to the city’s High Court for a judicial review to challenge the regulator’s handling of phone unlocking.

Apple Inc.’s iPhone 5 is blocked from connecting to the fourth-generation wireless networks of PCCW and China Mobile Ltd., while the smartphone can connect to rivals’ 4G high-speed networks, Hong Kong-based PCCW said in court documents obtained by Bloomberg News and dated Feb. 20.

PCCW asked the regulator to investigate the locking of the smartphone, which restricts subscribers through SIM cards programmed to work with particular carrier networks, according to the documents.

The regulator had taken too long to conduct the probe and had therefore failed in its statutory duty to take action, PCCW said in the court filings.

Kitty Potter, a Beijing-based Apple spokeswoman, declined to comment on PCCW’s claims.

PCCW shares fell 0.6 percent to HK$3.62 as of the midday trading break in Hong Kong. They have gained 32 percent in the past year, compared with a 6 percent advance in the benchmark Hang Seng Index.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jonathan Browning in Hong Kong at jbrowning9@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Philip Lagerkranser at lagerkranser@bloomberg.net

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