Two weeks after signing an agreement to become the sole distributor of Apple iPhones in China, China Unicom has purchased 5 billion units of the mobile phones for more than US$1.46 billion (RMB10 billion), the International Business Times reported, citing reports in local media. The phones will be available in September at 3G stalls in Carrefour stores and large retail outlets run by China Unicom. The 8G model will sell for US$350 (RMB2,400) and the 16G model will go for about US$700 (RMB4,800). Apple agreed to give up its original profit model, eschewing dividends, in order to break into the Chinese market. The company anticipates some competition from smuggled iPhones, which can be obtained for substantially lower prices, as well as pirated phones.
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