The Apple iPhone has always been a very prized possession to have and most Indians have always been deprived of the fun of owning one basically because of two reasons cost and availability. While the company cannot do much about the cost of the device in our country it is definitely looking to increase the availability in the country so that it can improve on its sales. The latest move in that direction being- the launch of the CDMA iPhone in the country. The GSM version of the same has already been launched in the country with the providers such as Bharti Airtel and Vodafone.
However, Two Indian wireless operators are in talks with Apple Inc. to offer a version of the iPhone based on code division multiple access, or CDMA, technology, people familiar with the matter said. Apple is in talks with Reliance Communications Ltd. and Tata Teleservices Ltd., whose networks run on CDMA technology. The discussions come amid news that Apple is making a CDMA version of its iPhone that Verizon Wireless will sell early next year in the U.S.
“Tata has been in talks with them [Apple] for four to five months now,” one of the people familiar with the negotiations said. It is unclear though when any launch may take place, these people said.
The report that a CDMA-based iPhone could be coming to India comes just days after the Journal said Apple plans to make a CDMA version of its iPhone that Verizon Wireless will begin selling early next year in the United States. AT&T, which uses GSM technology, has been the exclusive carrier of the iPhone in the United States since the touchscreen smartphone was launched in 2007. “Tata has been in talks with them (Apple) for four to five months now,” the Journal quoted a “person familiar with the negotiations” as saying. The Journal said launching a CDMA phone in India would give Apple access to more customers in the world’s fastest growing telecom market, which is adding around 18 million users a month.
In China, the Sept. 25 launch of the iPhone initially created a bit of chaos when the two-phone-per-person limit wasn’t enforced. Scalpers walked out of the flagship store with cardboard boxes full of the device, and fights broke out forcing the store to close temporarily. In less than a week, 200,000 iPhones flew off the shelves in Beijing, forcing many consumers to sit on a waiting list until the end of the month.
Launching a CDMA iPhone will give Apple access to more customers in the world’s fastest-growing telecom market, which is adding around 18 million users a month. India currently has about 670 million wireless users, of which roughly 20% use CDMA phones. GSM phones make up most of the market. Still, analysts say Apple may find it tough to generate significant revenue from a CDMA-based iPhone in India given that it is not as widely used as a GSM phone, and because there is stiff competition for smartphones from companies including Nokia Corp., Motorola Inc., HTC Corp., Samsung Electronics Co. and Research In Motion Ltd. India is soon going to have Reliance CDMA iPhone or TATA CDMA iPhone. Let’s hope CDMA iPhone price suits every Indian pocket.