Finally. Apple’s iPhone 4S has made progress towards debuting in China. On December 6, China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), has officially issued the network access permit for the iPhone 4S. China Unicom is now preparing for the iPhone 4S release as early as Christmas, or probably New Year.

MIIT is a state agency in China that regulates the Internet and wireless communications. The new iPhone 4S, like all mobile phones, still must obtain a network access license from regulators if its maker wants to sell it in China. Here’s the good news, the 4S had cleared the required MIIT regulatory hurdles and the device obtained a three-year valid Radio Transmission Equipment Type Approval Certificate (RTETAC), which is one of the requirements for getting MIIT’s network access license. The model submitted for testing was compatible with GSM, WCDMA, HSDPA / HSUPA, Bluetooth, and WAPI (WLAN Authentication and Privacy Infrastructure).

Previously, we reported licensed iPhone carrier China Unicom is just a step away from selling iPhone 4S, and they are just waiting for the network access permit. Today, the iPhone 4S has finally been granted the permit, and China Unicom is now expecting to launch the device this month. The company told Chinese news website Sohu that the preparation work for sales channel, staff training and network testing is completed. They will try their best to make the iPhone 4S’s arrival official by Christmas and New Year.

Meanwhile, China Unicom estimates that the iPhone 4S 16GB will be priced at 4,999 yuan without contract.


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