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China Unicom Reports Only 5,000 New iPhone Users Since Launch

Reuters reports that China Unicom has signed up only 5,000 iPhone users since the device's official launch there late last week. Despite the apparent poor performance of the iPhone, China Unicom Chairman Chang Xiobing remains upbeat about the iPhone, as well as the broader rollout of it 3G network, which has already signed up 1 million customers.

"We are satisified with iPhone sales so far, and we aim to have an additional 1 million new 3G subscribers each month in the near future," he said.

Xiobing also told reporters that the iPhone would help boost China Unicom's revenue for the fourth quarter, although the company will see increased costs due to iPhone subsidies and advertising, leading to decreased profit margins.

Concerns over the lack of Wi-Fi functionality on the initial China-specific iPhone and relatively high prices compared with many other countries had been seen as a challenge for the company, with many users interested in the device likely instead opting for fully-functional unlocked iPhones imported from other countries.