updated 10:01 pm EST, Mon December 9, 2013
December 13 date of device sale, December 18 date of 4G rollout
Potentially dispelling the rumors and false starts, China Mobile is taking preorders for iPhones on Thursday in Shanghai, according to an advertisement that briefly appeared on its website and in a call placed to customer service. Using the slogan "4G is here!" the ad not only announced the opening date of iPhone sales, but also suggests phones from other vendors such as Sony, Samsung, and HTC, that all support the new 4G network that the carrier has been building out for the last two years.
"Customers can begin to preorder for our new 4G services from December 12 through the company's website and some dedicated branches in Shanghai. But we will only start providing commercial 4G services after December 18," a customer services operator for China Mobile told the Wall Street Journal. The call was placed before the advertisement was pulled, so the current status of the rollout is unknown.
Pricing plans for the new Apple devices aren't clear, and had not been provided to the customer services team. New 4G services for the new devices will be available at some point soon in Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai, Shenzen, Nanjing, and five other cities.