Apple may take the iPhone to China Mobile within a year, a report says. (EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/GETTY IMAGES)

That estimate is based on analyst reports and a heightened level of interaction between the two companies.

The carrier has confirmed to the Journal that it’s in talks about the iPhone.

In June, much was made of Apple Chief Operating Officer and acting chief executive Tim Cook’s trip to Beijing, with many expecting the visit to be an indication of a deal between the companies. Expanding onto China’s largest mobile network would, of course, give Apple an enormous new field of consumers.

News of a possible deal with China and Apple’s early win in a patent dispute with HTC were likely factors in a market rally that sent Apple stock up to an all-time high of $364.92. The company reports its earnings tomorrow at 5 p.m.

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