Beijing Morning Post, 11/25/10
China Mobile (NYSE: CHL; 0941.HK) launched Blackberry Internet Service (BIS) for individual Blackberry users yesterday. Starting this month, users will be able to sign up for the service at a China Mobile service center, but will have to provide their own Blackberry handsets. A customer service representative for the operator said that plans will be priced at RMB 98 and 108 per month, offering 30 Mb and 50 Mb of Blackberry internet traffic. Overage will cost RMB 1/Mb. The plan does not include telephone service.
Push mail service for RIM handsets had previously only been available to governmental and enterprise users in China. The lowest-priced plan for enterprise users is RMB 198 per month.
Editor's Note: While China Mobile's head office and RIM have concluded the overarching agreement for the launch of Blackberry Internet Service, it has not yet been determined how the service will be marketed. Each provincial branch of China Mobile has autonomy regarding when it will launch the service and how it will market it (e.g. with what other products or services it might bundle BIS). At this stage, BIS service in China will also not include web-surfing functionality through RIM's servers, although users will be able to surf the web via China Mobile's portal. For more background on BIS service in China, please see "Rumor: China Mobile, RIM to Launch BIS," MD 8/25/10 issue.