With roughly 775 million subscribers, China Mobile is Apple's perfect partner for expansion on the local market. However, the 4G network coverage across China is limited to the major cities. This might be one of the main reasons for the not-so-great sales of the Apple-branded smartphones. According to some analysts, only 12% of the iOS devices in China are Apple iPhone 5s ones, whereas the more "affordable" iPhone 5c accounts for just 2% of all Apple-branded devices in the country.
China Mobile also announced that its overall earnings have dropped for the first time in a decade. One of the reasons for this decline is the increasing usage of free messaging services, such as WeChat, which are very popular among the Chinese population.
iPhone adoption rate in China
source: Wall Street Journal, Reuters via 9to5Mac (1), (2)