China Mobile, the world’s largest carrier in terms of subscribers, has confirmed to Bloomberg that it is in talks with Apple to offer the iPhone.
China Mobile’s chairman Xi Guohua told Bloomberg that the two companies are working to “strengthen cooperation,” though he didn’t indicate how much progress had been made in the talks.
China is a key growth market for Apple. In fact, sales in that country tripled last quarter compared to the same period in 2011.
If Apple can secure a deal with China Mobile, it will open up the iPhone to a vast new customer base that could significantly boost sales. As of earlier this year, China Mobile had some 667 million subscribers.