Apple's smartphone world tour has always skipped past China Mobile and its 700 million-plus subscribers. The network uses the incompatible TD-SCDMA wireless standard and it's been generally presumed that Cupertino wouldn't follow Nokia's example and produce a custom handset just for this partner. However, China Mobile president Li Yue has revealed that he has been in talks with Cupertino since 2009, with negotiations becoming "more intimate" last year. Despite Apple's apparent willingness to co-operate, that's not the only sabot in the machinery. When asked, Yue said:
"technology is a problem, but it isn't the entire problem, there's also mainly the issue of business model and mutual benefits."
Which could be taken to mean that it's more a case of financial wrangling around revenue sharing and carrier subsidy than it is about modem chips. Maybe that's what happens when you have two companies, both used to getting their own way, but we wouldn't count on seeing iPhone 5T any time soon.