Netease Tech, 1/22/09
An industry source has revealed that China Mobile (NYSE: CHL; 0941.HK) is currently in negotiations with numerous PC manufacturers including Intel, Asus, BenQ, HP, Dell, Lenovo (0992.HK), Founder Technology Group (600601.SH), and Acer regarding the release of notebook computers with integrated TD-SCDMA Internet data cards. The computers could be released to the Chinese market by March at the earliest. TD-SCDMA Internet notebook computers will be sold by PC manufacturers through regular retail channels rather than through operator procurements, as has been done for TD-SCDMA handsets. One year of TD-SCDMA Internet usage will be included in the price of the new notebook computers.
An employee responsible for Asus' EeePC mini laptop stated that TD-SCDMA installation is not difficult from a technology standpoint, but is costly, as 3G networks in China are not yet fully deployed (meaning the industry has not yet reached economies of scale). Mainstream TD-SCDMA data cards currently cost at least RMB 500. China Mobile hopes to solve this problem by subsidizing much of the cost of TD-SCDMA data cards for manufacturers.