Apple always launches its flagship smartphones in the biggest markets, simultaneously. iPhone day happened last week, but there was one main market that seems to have been left out – China. In fact, it’s a huge market, and many of us are wondering why it didn’t make the first round of iPhone 6 launches.
Suspicions started rising in the tech blogosphere. Some believed Apple could have been late to submitting government applications. Others think the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology could have delayed it because Apple could not be in the best terms with the government.
China promises Apple is missing in their blacklists. We were still left in the dark about this issue, though, as Apple’s influence in China keeps growing. China now accounts for 15% of Apple’s revenue, and sales have doubled from 2011 to 2013, accounting for $25.4 billion. What is going on here?
Apple is definitely not ignoring this huge market anyone would give anything to tap into. And it turns out there is no conspiracies or weird conflicts going on here. A new report claims this is all about Apple’s inclusion of NFC capabilities.
An anonymous former senior executive from China mobile explains this is simply a delay caused by the chip, which was not included in any previous Apple devices and requires more time for review. The new devices will need a license from TAF (Terminal Testing & Approval Forum), which is said to take from 2 weeks to 2 months longer.
Tests could prove to be a bit trickier for TAF, as this chip can only be used with Apple Pay. To make matters even more complicated, Apple is asking approval for two versions (CDMA(EV-DO)/LTE and W-CDMA/LTE) of each iPhone.
This may be a one-time issue, though. Other manufacturers have an easier time with this process because they have been implementing NFC for a long time and all documents should be in order. China may just be included in next year’s new iPhone initial launch.