Updated from 9:17 a.m. EST to provide analyst comments in the fifth paragraph.NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- China Mobile ( CHL) is the one major carrier in the world without Apple's ( AAPL) iPhone. Qualcomm ( QCOM) may be about to change that. Qualcomm announced a new Long Term Evolution (LTE) chipset on Thursday, the RF360 Front End Solution, which for the first time ever offers a truly global 4G LTE design for mobile devices. It can run on all seven modes, including LTE-FDD, LTE-TDD, WCDMA, EV-DO, CDMA 1x, TD-SCDMA and GSM/EDGE. That's important, because China Mobile's 3G network is TD-SCDMA based, though it is working on a 4G network with its own homegrown technology. Part of the reason why Apple has not brought the iPhone to the world's largest carrier is that the technologies did not match up, but the new Qualcomm chip may change that.
In its most recent quarter, Apple noted that revenue from Greater China (which includes China, Hong Kong and Taiwan) was $6.83 billion. That equalled 67% year-over-year growth, despite only having the iPhone and the new iPad in the country for the last two weeks of the quarter. Qualcomm's new global LTE chipset only adds further credence to the story that the iPhone may in fact be closer to its China Mobile arrival than many think. By bringing the iPhone 5 to China Mobile, it would be a huge coup for Apple - one that will help turn the tide against Samsung, ZTE and other handset makers firmly entrenched in China. Apple could not be immediately reached for comment for this story. --Written by Chris Ciaccia in New York >Contact by Email. Follow @Commodity_Bull