China ended May with a total of 899.3 million subscribers in the 5G segment
China’s telecommunication industry recorded revenues of CNY 665 billion ($99.46 billion) in the first five months of the year, up 8.5% compared to the same period the previous year, local news service Xinhua reported, citing data from the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.
According to the report, emerging businesses, including big data, cloud computing, internet data center and Internet of Things, continued to experience a solid growth during the period.
The combined revenue of the emerging businesses of China’s three telecom carriers–China Telecom, China Mobile and China Unicom–grew by 34.3% year-on-year to CNY 128.3 billion, accounting for 19.3% of the sector’s total revenue in January-May.
At the end of May, China had a total of 1.7 million 5G base stations, accounting for 16.7% of the country’s mobile network base stations. According to the official data, a total of 275,000 5G base stations were built in the first five months of 2023.
China ended May with a total of 899.3 million subscribers in the 5G segment, according to the carriers’ latest available figures.
Chinese operators recorded a net gain of 30.18 million 5G subscribers in May.
China Mobile, the world’s largest operator in terms of subscribers, added a total of 18.21 million 5G subscribers during last month. The operator said it ended May with 495.13 million 5G subscribers, compared to 221.95 million 5G customers in May 2021.
China Mobile had added a total of 108.32 million subscribers in the 5G segment during the first five months of the year.
Rival operator China Unicom said it added a total of 4.93 million 5G subscribers during May. The carrier ended the month with 179.70 million 5G subscribers.
Meanwhile, China Telecom added 7.04 million 5G subscribers last month to take its total 5G subscribers base to 224.47 million. During the first five months of the year, the telco had added a total of 36.67 million 5G subscribers.
China expects to end this year with nearly 2 million 5G base stations, according to previous reports. Chinese carriers reportedly deployed a total of 654,000 base stations nationwide during last year.
The country’s 5G networks now covers all prefecture-level cities, more than 98% of county-level urban areas and 80% of township-level urban areas across the country..
Earlier this year, the Chinese government had 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.