A recent report from Stenvall Skoeld & Co. stated that, as of 2011, there was a combined total of 21 million iPhones and iPads in China. The firm’s report also notes that the majority of China’s iOS ownership is focused on the more affluent areas, such as Beijing and Shanghai. We’re not surprised, considering the iPhone costs around twice the average monthly salary of a Chinese citizen. Overall, however, Apple is the fifth largest seller of mobile phones in the country and recently fell behind local phone maker ZTE.
Apple still has the potential to increase its presence by tapping into China’s more rural regions and continuing to cut prices on its older devices. This business tactic helps make iOS devices more affordable for consumers who are interested in its products but are normally unable to afford the newest models. The iPhone 4S was recently released on China Telecom in March, after it was exclusively available from China Unicom, which opened the device to an additional 15 million subscribers. Factor in this new potential customer base, in addition to the new iPad’s upcoming China debut, and Apple could easily be on course to surpass last year’s numbers.