RIM Aims To Launch Blackberry in China


Research In Motion Ltd. , maker of BlackBerry wireless email devices, is aiming to launch commercial service in China by year end amid a rapid expansion in Asia, the company’s co-CEO said on Tuesday. RIM said last October it had signed a memorandum of understanding with China Mobile (Hong Kong) Ltd. to offer its trademark BlackBerry service in China, the world’s biggest cellular market with nearly 350 million subscribers.

RIM has launched service with 14 Asian carriers in eight countries to date — including about nine in the last year alone — and hopes to double the number of partnerships in the region this year. Within Asia, RIM now offers services through partners in India, Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia and the Philippines, with South Korean and Chinese services expected in the near term. But it is still absent in the region’s biggest economy, Japan, due to technical reasons and also because of Japan’s complex writing system that combines characters of Chinese origin with two native alphabets.

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