Track the companies that matter to you. It's FREE! Click one of these fan favorites to get started: Apple; Google; Ford.



The iPhone 4S Makes It Just in Time for the New Year

Don't let it get away!

Keep track of the stocks that matter to you.

Help yourself with the Fool's FREE and easy new watchlist service today.

It looks like Apple's (Nasdaq: AAPL  ) latest and greatest iPhone 4S will be making it to China just in time for the New Year. The Chinese New Year, that is, which takes place on Jan. 23 this time around.

This year's model has been making its way around the world in record time, no doubt taking 8-megapixel photos and 1080p HD video to document its journeys. It's been the fastest rollout yet of an iPhone model, which also made its way to Russia, Brazil, and Taiwan, among other places, earlier this month. Those countries follow Colombia and India, which started talking to Siri last month (albeit in English, even though Siri has some trouble with Indian accents).

China represents limitless growth opportunities for Apple, with an exploding middle class that views the iPhone as a status symbol. The region is Apple's fastest-growing major geography. The device recently got the blessing of government regulators at the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, clearing the way for its official launch.

The iPhone 4S launched in Hong Kong in November, with a buying frenzy reminiscent of the stateside launch.

China Unicom (NYSE: CHU  ) continues to be the only official carrier within the country, enjoying exclusivity the way AT&T (NYSE: T  ) did for a while, but that hasn't stopped adventurous types from running millions of unlocked devices on rival China Mobile's (NYSE: CHL  ) network.

China Mobile boasts more than three times as many subscribers as China Unicom does, representing an enormous opportunity once China Mobile inevitably gets the iPhone. China Telecom (NYSE: CHA  ) , whose network resembles Verizon's (NYSE: VZ  ) CDMA network, would also like an invite, but as the smallest carrier, it remains less important -- just like T-Mobile domestically.

Beyond the horizon, next year's iPhone that will probably have 4G speeds should play nicely with China Mobile, since the company's chairman, Wang Jianzhou, has confirmed a "positive answer from Apple" regarding a TD-LTE iPhone.

The Chinese popularity of the iPhone 4S is even more striking because Siri doesn't support either Mandarin or Cantonese Chinese. Overall, Mandarin is far more prevalent throughout China, and Apple has promised support for the language in 2012. It currently works only with English, French, and German, but Apple may bring Chinese support as soon as March.

China is Apple's land of opportunity. Apple's fiscal 2011 China revenue accounted for 12% of sales, up from 2% in fiscal 2009. The region's revenue last quarter soared 270% year over year, and it's one reason Apple is still a buy.

With Apple leading the mobile revolution, some winners are hard to see -- because they're buried inside the gadgets. The proliferation of mobile gadgets is going to be breathtaking, and a handful of companies stand to rake in the profits as consumers snap up each year's latest and greatest models. We've just released a new special free report on 3 Hidden Winners of the iPhone, iPad, and Android Revolution. In it, you'll find three companies that supply crucial components that virtually every mobile device relies on. Check it out now -- it's free.

Fool contributor Evan Niu owns shares of AT&T, Apple, and Verizon Communications, but he holds no other position in any company mentioned. Check out his holdings and a short bio. The Motley Fool owns shares of China Mobile and Apple. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Apple and China Mobile and creating a bull call spread position in Apple. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Read/Post Comments (0) | Recommend This Article (4)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

Be the first one to comment on this article.

Compare Brokers

Fool Disclosure

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 1749769, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 10/27/2016 5:00:48 PM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...

Today's Market

updated Moments ago Sponsored by:
DOW 18,169.68 -29.65 -0.16%
S&P 500 2,133.04 -6.39 -0.30%
NASD 5,215.97 -34.29 -0.65%

Create My Watchlist

Go to My Watchlist

You don't seem to be following any stocks yet!

Better investing starts with a watchlist. Now you can create a personalized watchlist and get immediate access to the personalized information you need to make successful investing decisions.

Data delayed up to 5 minutes

Related Tickers

10/27/2016 4:00 PM
AAPL $114.48 Down -1.11 -0.96%
Apple CAPS Rating: ****
CHA $52.25 Down -0.24 -0.46%
China Telecom CAPS Rating: **
CHL $57.20 Down -0.96 -1.65%
China Mobile CAPS Rating: ****
CHU $11.80 Down +0.00 +0.00%
China Unicom CAPS Rating: **
T $36.52 Up +0.09 +0.25%
AT and T CAPS Rating: ****
VZ $48.54 Up +0.91 +1.91%
Verizon Communicat… CAPS Rating: ****