China Nears 800 Million Mobile Phone Subscribers

China Nears 800 Million Mobile Phone Subscribers

Dan Nystedt / PCWorld
Tue Jun 29, 6:00 am ET

The number of mobile phone
subscribers
in China
reached 796 million
as of the end of May, while 3G subscriber numbers have almost doubled,
the government said Tuesday.

Over 9.4 million new Chinese subscribers signed up for mobile phone service in
May, for an official total
of 48.5 million new users so far this year, according to China’s
Ministry of Information Industry.

The number of people signing up for 3G service, new to China as of last
year, hit 22.6 million at the end of May, up 10.3 million so far this
year.

But while China remains the world’s largest mobile phone market by subscribers, India’s
subscriber numbers are growing faster.

India added 16.3 million new mobile phone subscribers in May, according
to the Telecom Regulatory
Authority of India
. The country’s total now stands at 617.5
million.

Both China and India boast populations of over 1 billion.

China’s three big telecommunications operators have also reported their
mobile subscriber figures. China
Mobile
remains the largest provider with 549.0 million
subscribers at the end of May, followed by China Unicom, which sells iPhones in China,
at 155.3 million, and China
Telecom
with 71.5 million.

China Mobile reported it had 9.3 million 3G subscribers at the end of
May, while China Unicom said it had 6.5 million. China Telecom did not
report a figure, but a company official said it now has between 6
million and 7 million 3G subscribers. The company reported its last
official figure of 5.6 million at the end of the first quarter.

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