Apple China Event Sparks China Mobile Rumors

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Sept. 5 (Bloomberg) –- Bloomberg’s Cory Johnson and Adam Satariano discuss the upcoming Apple media event in Beijing which is sparking rumors of an iPhone deal with China Mobile . They speak with Emily Chang on Bloomberg Television’s "Bloomberg West." (Source: Bloomberg)

That has prompted speculation apple could be announcing a deal to bring the iphone to china mobile, the world's largest cell carrier.

My partner, cory johnson, is back with us.

What can you tell us about this beijing event?

Apple has held these parallel events over time.

To a certain extent, it would be 2:00 in the morning in beijing at the same time they are having it in cupertino.

They will be doing a rebroadcast in beijing.

It has sparked a lot of speculation about where things stand with china mobile.

That is the one carrier that can put a major dent in the chinese market.

Where do things stand with china mobile?

It has been years of negotiations.

At this point, there are customers on the carrier who use it, but it is through this back and way.

-- back-end way.

We have been talking about how apple has been falling behind in china.

Xiaomi now sells more phones in china than apple, according to certain market share statistics.

How critical is this china mobile deal at this point in time?

It is the last domino standing in apple's global dominance, or at least growth.

The iphone has gained market share in the places it has been sold.

They have added big countries and big carriers, and more and more geography.

Three years ago, apple sold 40 million iphones.

Last year they sold 125 million.

They had fantastic growth because they were able to add geography.

If you're not on at&t, china mobile -- those are the big players out there.

Those carriers know that.

They are driving a hard deal with apple.

Is the fact that the chinese customers have to wait longer for the newer models of the iphones, does that hurt apple?

Could that change?

A bigger thing here is the price.

To buy an iphone in china is -- you don't have a subsidy, necessarily.

You are talking about a very high expense.

Disposable income is not as much as what you are seeing in the u.s. if apple introduces a lower- priced device, as is expected, that can go a long way to getting onto a network like china mobile.

Does it all come down to price?

Fundamentally, it will come down to price.

What we just saw in that video of xiaomi and the excitement of the product, that carries over in apple products.

Customers have shown a willingness to pay a premium for those devices.

Apple has been able to get better gross margins than anybody else in the business.

We talked about how tim cook has visited china multiple times.

He has been there a couple times so far this year.

This relationship is extremely important to apple.

Talk about the china strategy undercooked versus steve jobs -- under cook versus steve jobs.

Every earnings call, he talks about how important china is.

The sales there, there is a lot of these new characters coming on, new manufacturers coming on the market.

Some devices look a lot like apple's devices.

They have been able to get a lot of shares.

Apple doesn't have a lot of retail stores there.

They have been trying to accelerate and move more quickly.

This text has been automatically generated. It may not be 100% accurate.

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