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CHT, others to begin selling iPad Air, iPad mini 2 next Monday

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Eyeing year-end shopping sprees, Chunghwa Telecom (中華電信) and Far EasTone (遠傳) are to launch sales of Apple's latest tablet models, iPad Air and iPad mini 2, next Monday.

Sales of Apple Inc.'s latest tablet models will kick off Dec. 16, Chunghwa Telecom (CHT) announced Friday.

The Wi-Fi plus cellular models of the 9.7-inch iPad Air and 7.9-inch iPad mini 2 will come in four different storage sizes --16GB, 32GB, 64GB and 128GB, Chunghwa said in a statement.

CHT's declaration came one day after Apple announce the global sale of the iPad Air and iPad mini 2 on Dec. 16.

Taiwan's largest telecom carrier said customers can choose from a number of preferential service fee packages for the newest iPad models.

Those who opt for Chunghwa's 3G mobile network can enjoy a maximum 50 percent discount on the monthly service charge over a two- or three-year period, the company said.

The Central News Agency (CNA) reported earlier that the first shipments of the iPad Air and iPad mini 2 to Chunghwa Telecom would be limited to “thousands of units.”

The iPad Air is 20 -percent thinner and 28 percent lighter than the fourth generation iPad, while the iPad mini 2 features a razor-sharp retina display. Both devices run iOS7 platform.

Another two of Taiwan's major telecom operators earlier said they will soon offer information to local consumers about Apple's new iPad models, apparently referring to the iPad Air and iPad mini 2.

CNA reported that Taiwan Mobile (台灣大哥大) and Far EasTone Telecommunications Co. said that consumers who register on their websites will get firsthand information about the new iPad tablets via text messaging or email.

Concurrently, Hon Hai Precision Industry (鴻海精密) has reported its consolidated revenues hit a record at US$15.41 billion for November, with growth of 19.23 percent on-month and 18 percent on-year. The growth was mainly generated by shipments of consumer electronics, Hon Hai said.

Taiwan-based Digitimes Research cited sources saying that Hon Hai's sales were buoyed by shipments of the iPad Air, iPad mini 2 with Retina display, as well as new game consoles.

Considering that console sales are no more than 3 or 4 million units, the majority of their profit boost was from great iPad sales which could bode well for Apple in their fourth quarter financial profile, according to Digitimes Research.

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