Chinese carriers deploy 81,000 5G base stations in Jan-Feb: report

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Chinese operators have deployed a total of 654,000 base stations nationwide during last year

China ended February with nearly 1.5 million 5G base stations after local carriers deployed 81,000 new base stations in the first two months of the year, Chinese news agency Xinhua reported, citing data from Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT).

The report also noted that China’s telecommunications sector posted steady expansion in the first two months of the year, with emerging businesses such as big data and cloud computing experiencing rapid growth.

The ministry stated that the combined industrial revenue grew 9% yoy to CNY 258.6 billion ($ 40.72 billion), while the emerging business revenue of China Telecom, China Mobile and China Unicom grew 34.1% year-over-year to CNY 50.8 billion.

Cloud computing services revenues grew 124.6% year-over-year, while big data and Internet of Things revenues surged 58% and 21.9%, respectively.

The ministry said Chinese operators have deployed a total of 654,000 base stations nationwide during last year.

The 5G network now covers all prefecture-level cities, more than 98% of county-level urban areas and 80% of township-level urban areas across the country, said Zhao Zhiguo, a spokesman for the MIIT.

The Chinese government expects to accelerate efforts to expand 5G infrastructure across the country this year, according to Xiao Yaqing, the head of MIIT.

China expects local carriers to install nearly 600,000 5G base stations during 2022 to end the year with 2 million installed 5G base stations.

Earlier this year, MIIT unveiled plans to more than triple the number of 5G base stations over the next four years, targeting a total of 3.64 million by end-2025.

Under this plan, China aims to have 26 5G base stations for every 10,000 people by the end of 2025. In comparison, in 2020, there were five 5G base stations for every 10,000 people in China.

China is expected to reach 892 million connections in the 5G segment in 2025, according to a report recently published by the GSMA.

According to the ‘The Mobile Economy China “report, GSMA expects 5G connections in the country to represent 52% of total mobile lines in 2025, compared to 29% in 2021.

“Due to the rapid take-up of 5G in China, the region is one of the global leaders in terms of 5G adoption. In 2021, China added more than 285 million 5G connections, with its share of global 5G connections equivalent to 75%, ”the report states.

GSMA noted that the Chinese regulator’s facilitation of commercial network-sharing agreements has enabled fast base station deployments and considerable cost savings for local operators. “Moreover, fully realizing the mobile opportunity will require forward looking policymaking, particularly with respect to spectrum. To this end, regulators should aim to make a total of 2 GHz of mid-band spectrum available to support the growth of 5G over the 2025–2030 period, ”GSMA’s report said.

The report also states that mainland China represents the single largest 5G market in the world, with 5G connections (481 million) accounting for over three-quarters of the global total (636 million) at the end of 2021.



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