iPhone 5 is closer to a China launch after regulatory approval

Credit: Apple

AllThingsD reports that two models of the iPhone 5, A1429 and A1442, have been approved by the China State Radio Management agency.

That means that the device is one steop closer to going on sale in the country.

One handset, with the A1429 model number, is compatible with China Unicom’s network, and the second, with the A1442 model number, is compatible with China Telecom’s CDMA network.

China Mobile, the world’s largest carrier, has been negotiating with Apple to offer the iPhone 5 but no deal has been signed yet.

Recent reports state that China Telecom and China Unicom will offer the iPhone 5 as early as this quarter, a move that will narrow the gap in 3G subscribers with rival China Mobile.