China Clears Apple Sales of 3G Device

Chinese regulators have approved an Apple Inc. device with high-speed wireless data capabilities, suggesting the US computer maker is one step closer to selling the latest version of its iPad in China.

According to the website of China's Telecommunication Equipment Certification Center, an Apple device with third-generation, or 3G, data capabilities has been issued the license needed for the company to begin sales in China.

The device would be compatible with the network of China Unicom, Apple's longtime partner in releasing its popular iPhone and iPad devices. The notice on the website didn't name the device, listed as "model number A1430."

Apple's other devices capable of receiving cellular network data, including the latest versions of its iPhone as well as earlier versions of its iPad, already have been approved for use and are being sold in China. Vendors often begin selling new devices within weeks of network access licenses being granted.

An Apple spokeswoman declined to comment. A China Unicom spokeswoman also declined to comment.

Though China is Apple's second-largest market, behind the US, the company has been slow to release the new iPad, which has come out in most developed and many other developing countries, such as Venezuela and Malaysia.