People walk past stores promoting the Apple iPhone 6S in the southern city of Shenzhen on January 26, 2016.

Photo: Reuters

Google and Apple, two of the world s most powerful technology giants, respectively unveiled deals with major Chinese technology companies Xiaomi and Didi Chuxing in the past week, fuelling speculation about their China market strategy - or, in the case of Google, China market comeback strategy.

Apple has to wrestle with falling iPhone sales, while Google needs to first find its way back into China since pulling out in 2010.

A visitor experiences virtual reality goggles of Google Cardboard at the 2016 Global Mobile Internet Conference at the National Convention Center in Beijing on April 26, 2016.

Photo: EPA

Google s search business could return via Sogou, the mainland s third largest search engine company, which is owned by Sohu.com, according to a person with knowledge of the matter, who asked not to be named The two companies have discussed a partnership where Google would perform some of the searches and Sogou would conduct the results screening.

Meanwhile Apple s US$1 billion investment in car-hailing app Didi Chuxing is seen as a win-win deal that would help Apple score new growth in China.

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