By Juan Pedro Tomás
Chinese carriers have already deployed a total of 480,000 5G base stations, which represents 96% of the country’s target for the year of 500,000, according to government data.
China also ended August with approximately 100 million devices connected to 5G networks in mainland China, according to the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT).
According to MIIT Minister Xiao Yaqing, there were more than 60 million 5G users in the country as of the end of last month.
From January to June this year, 119 out of 197 new smartphone models released in China were 5G phones, according to the China Academy of Information and Communication Technology (CAICT), a research institute under MIIT. Shipments for 5G-enabled phones accounted for 45 per cent of the country’s total smartphone shipments, CAICT added in a report.
The municipal government of Shenzhen recently announced that the city’s 5G deployment was fully completed. This makes it the first city in China to achieve full-scale 5G deployment, with a total of 46,480 5G base stations.
China’s capital Beijing built a total of 5,135 5G base stations in the first half of this year, according to previous press reports. Beijing will complete the construction of 13,000 5G base stations this year.
By June, the total number of 5G base stations in Beijing had reached 22,500, said head of the Beijing Municipal Commission of Development and Reform, Tan Xuxiang.
Meanwhile, Shanghai has previously stated its commitment to investing CNY 10 billion (US$1.4 billion) in 5G network construction this year, with the city anticipating 30,000 outdoor 5G base stations and 50,000 indoor small stations built by the end of 2020.
Commercial areas, such as Nanjing Road E., Xujiahui and Lujiazui, will be more densely covered by 5G network, with download speeds exceeding 500 mbps.
In June 2019, China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) officially issued licenses for the launch of commercial 5G networks in the country. Those 5G permits were granted to China Mobile, China Unicom, China Telecom and state-owned broadcaster China Broadcasting Network.
It is forecasted that 28 per cent of China’s mobile connections will be running on 5G networks by 2025, accounting for about one-third of all 5G connections globally, according to a previous report by the GSMA.