Chloe Yu, Taipei; Adam Hwang, DIGITIMES [Tuesday 7 December 2010]
China Unicom, currently the only sales agent of iPhone 4 in the China market, plans to lock iPhone 4s to its SIM cards in a bid to prevent contract-bundled purchasers’ reselling iPhone 4 at high prices, according to industry sources in Taiwan.
The iPhone 4 exclusive sales agent rights have enabled China Unicom to attract many 3G subscribers, including those with portable phone numbers, the sources noted. China Unicom has so far sold 500,000 iPhone 4s and another 100,000 pre-order purchasers are waiting for deliveries, the sources indicated.
However, some purchasers have resold their iPhone 4s to others without transferring the corresponding SIM cards, rendering new users not subject to the contract sold with the phone, the sources pointed out. The separation of iPhone 4 and SIM cards will cause China Unicom to see revenue losses over the contract period, the sources indicated.
As iPhone 4 re-sales are increasing, China Unicom plans to use the strict measure of SIM-locking. While such measures can cause controversy, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) seems willing to tacitly allow China Unicom to do so, the sources pointed out.
Article via Digitimes