The Wall Street Journal reports (subscription required) that China Mobile chairman Wang Jianzhou has confirmed that the company is still involved in talks with Apple to bring the iPhone to the carrier's network. The iPhone would have to be modified in order to operate on China Mobile's proprietary 3G network, or would be relegated to the company's slower 2G network.
A stumbling block, however, is that Apple would need to modify the iPhone to work on China Mobile's home-grown TD-SCDMA third-generation wireless technology platform. If not, the iPhone would only be able to run on China Mobile's slower 2G platform.
"We are still in talks" with Apple, Mr. Wang said. "We still hope to reach an agreement, so I can't say anything else."
China Mobile and Apple had engaged in lengthy negotiations that encountered significant stumbling blocks, allowing rival China Unicom to become the first to reach a deal for the iPhone in China. The deal, however, is not exclusive, allowing Apple to continue negotiating with China Mobile and other wireless providers to expand the iPhone's reach in that country.