Asia Express - Mobile Communications
3G Development in China April 27 - May 3
May 01, 2009
- In the wake of the agreement signed with China Unicom for the deployment of WCDMA (Wideband Code Division Multiple Access) networks, Alcatel Lucent announced on April 28 that it has secured separate agreements with China Mobile and China Telecom through Alcatel-Lucent Shanghai, the Sina News reported on April 28. The value of the deal is totaled at around US$ 1.7 billion, of which US$1 billion from China Mobile, and US$700 million from China Telecom. Under the agreements, Alcatel Lucent will deliver 3G network upgrades, integration and maintenance services to these two Chinese telecom operators.

- China Mobile will launch four tailored-made TD-SCDMA (Time Division- Synchronous CDMA) phones in May 2009, with an average price tag of around 1500 RMB (US$218.84; US$1 = 6.82 RMB), the Sina News reported on April 29. Of four TD-SCDMA phones, two models will be supplied by Coolpad, with the price tag ranging from 2500 RMB (US$ 366.41) to 4500 RMB (US$659.53), and one each by ZTE and LG. In related news, it is said that the first batch of these phones is likely to hit the market before China Unicom's 3G rollout on May 17.

- China Unicom officially launched its 3G service brand, dubbed WO, on April 28, the Sina News reported on April 28. With the brand promotion, the company aims to integrate its marketing resources, build brand awareness and image. On May 17, China Unicom plan to launch a commercial trial to deliver WCDMA services in 55 cities in China, where its subscribers can enjoy various 3G services. Meanwhile, China Unicom reiterated that its WCDMA service will cover up to 284 cities by year-end 2009, according to the same source.

- China Telecom recently announced that it has entered into a strategic agreement with the Hainan government, whereby the company will invest at least 3.2 billion RMB (US$469.0 million) in the province over the next five years in a bid to reach full network coverage, the Sina News reported on April 26. Additionally, China Telecom is set to reach full 3G network coverage in Hainan by year-end 2009. As of March 2009, China Telecom's CDMA service has covered 18 cities/counties in the said province.