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China - Mobile Market - Overview, Statistics and Forecasts

China - Mobile Market - Overview, Statistics and Forecasts

China has built an extensive mobile infrastructure that now supports the largest subscriber base in the world. Predominantly using 2G architecture, the market was transformed in 2008 when the government intervened and created three major full service operators and issued the long awaited 3G licences. The ruling that all three operators use different 3G standards put pressure on China Mobile to succeed with the locally developed TD-SCDMA technology. By 2014 China Mobile had moved boldly forward with TD-LTE to grab the advantage in the 4G market. This report provides detailed statistics and insights into the mobile market in China by operator and technology. Forecasts are given for the total mobile subscriber base and 3G subscribers to 2018.

Key developments:

continued strong mobile growth with close to 1.3 billion subscribers by end-2014;
3G subscribers accounting for 40% of the mobile subscriber base by end-2014;
China Mobile establishes strong lead in 4G market with its rapid roll-out of TD-LTE;
Its network made up of more than 500,000 base stations by end-2014;
China Telecom and China Unicom started hybrid FD-LTE/TD-LTE network trials in June 2014;
SMS volume dropping sharply;
33 MVNO licences issued by the MIIT over a 12 month period starting December 2013;
ZTE has successfully completed pre-commercial field testing of pre-5G with China Mobile.

Companies covered in this report include:

China Mobile; China Telecom; China Unicom.

1. Synopsis
2. Mobile communications
2.1 Overview of China's mobile market
2.2 Mobile statistics
2.2.1 Mobile subscribers 1995-2014
2.2.2 Mobile subscribers by operator
2.3 Mobile technologies
2.3.1 PAS/PHS (Little Smart/Xiaolingtong)
2.3.2 GSM
2.3.3 General Packet Radio Service (GPRS)
2.3.4 Enhanced Data for GSM Evolution (EDGE)
2.3.5 CDMA
2.4 Third Generation (3G) mobile
2.4.1 Background
2.4.2 3G development
2.5 Fourth Generation (4G) mobile
2.5.1 Background
2.5.2 Service launch and development
2.6 Voice over LTE (VoLTE)
2.7 Pre-5G
3. Mobile Services
3.1 Short Message Service (SMS)
3.2 M2M
3.3 Mobile applications
3.4 Mobile internet
5. Forecast: Mobile subscribers 2013-2014; 2018
5.1 Forecast: Total mobile subscribers 2013-2014; 2018
5.2 Forecast: 3G mobile subscribers
5.3 Forecasting methodology
6. Related reports
Table 1 Mobile subscribers and annual change 1995 - 2014
Table 2 Mobile subscribers by operator and annual change December 2013
Table 3 Little Smart (PHS) subscribers 2002 - 2012
Table 4 China Telecom CDMA subscribers pre/postpaid, MOU and ARPU 2002 - 2013
Table 5 3G subscribers in China 2008 - 2014
Table 6 Growth of text messages (SMS) in China and annual change 2000 - 2014
Table 7 China Mobile SMS usage volume and annual change 2003 - 2012
Table 8 Leading mobile value added services by subscribers and penetration - 2012
Table 9 Mobile internet subscribers and annual change 2006 - 2013
Table 10 China Mobile - mobile internet use 2010 - 2013
Table 11 Forecast mobile subscribers and penetration lower band forecast - 2014; 2018
Table 12 Forecast mobile subscribers and penetration higher band forecast 2014; 2018
Table 13 Forecast 3G mobile subscribers and share of mobile market 2013 - 2014, 2018
Chart 1 China mobile subscriber growth, population penetration 2005 - 2014
Chart 2 Leading mobile value added services - penetration 2012
Chart 3 - Mobile internet subscribers and annual change - 2007 - 2013

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