The world's biggest mobile phone network China Mobile is reportedly in talks with Apple about the possibility of offering the iPhone.
The carrier's chairman has confirmed the two firms are currently in talks.
One potential snag is compatibility issues between the iPhone and China Mobile, which means that Apple's handsets currently only work on the slow 2G network.
Analysts say this issue could be resolved with the launch of the next iPhone, which is rumoured to be happening at some point this summer.
This would represent a significant coup for Apple, which has thus far struggled to make a significant impact in the Chinese mobile phone market.
"We've been actively talking to Apple on how we can cooperate. I can't give you too many details, but I'd like to repeat that both sides do hope to boost our cooperation," chairman of China Mobile Xi Guohua was quoted as saying.
Posted by Peter Robinson