iPhone in China September 1st 2009?

I went into my local China Mobile Shop and the accompanying China Unicom shop (next door) yesterday to get the wife a new phone. Seeing as my monthly bill would pay for three contracts out right – we might as well get something back out of it – as opposed to just a Gold VIP Card that only works in select airport lounges around China and god forbid if you are on a flight later than 8PM and want a free coffee or cold drink or foot bath….

But I digress. I thought that my 4 Year old Nokia E61 could do with an upgrade. I have coveted an iPhone for a while but held off due to price (out of principle a phone does not deserve that much money) and for lack of a keyboard.

In any case I wanted to check the details on the networks. First I confirmed in the CMCC shop that their 3G was some whacko China standard that did not work outside of China. Screw that – over to UNICOM. Asked about plans (for a free phone for the Missus) and also maybe a new number for me (sick of all the SMS Spam here).

To my many questions about packages and data plans the answer was wait until September 1st. About to go off on a rant about the Chinese penchant for accounting and billing cycles that have to perfectly match the calendar cycle (no such thing as reversal entries here in their accrual accounting systems!) and why did I have to wait 3 weeks to sign a contract! The sales dude calmed me down and said:

“No there is a big announcement on Sept 1st – that is when all the info comes out on the 3G plans and phones”.

I then asked about discreet dongles for my laptop and would they work on Mac and Linux. Again “Sept 1st” was the answer.

I asked is the iPhone coming (having read rumours on engadget) – “VERY SOON!” Was the excited answer that I received. I replied, “Sept 1st” to which I got a red face and silence.

I asked a few more questions and the parting comment from myself was….”So Sept 1st…big event, all the info and news will be announced then?”

To which I got a silent nod.

Take it or leave it. He (Sales dude) may be full of crap or not. But I share for you all to use in a responsible manner. 😉