The government will issue third-generation (3G) mobile phone licenses this month or early in 2009, a long-awaited move that will generate billions of renminbi of investment in network upgrading and expansion next year.
Li Yizhong, minister of industry and information technology, made the announcement at a press conference, without giving a definite timetable. He said,’The three carriers are well prepared for 3G licensing.’ This is true. They have been for several years. 3G has existed elsewhere for nearly ten years.
Under the plan, China Mobile, the country’s biggest mobile carrier, will be awarded the license to operate TD-SCDMA, a system based on homegrown technology.
The three telecom operators reached an agreement to share their networks.
The deal, which specified how the telecom carriers would share their existing networks, jointly build new facilities and allocate interests, is an example to the rest of the world where stupid duplication has wasted billions.
China Mobile, which provided a 3G service during the Beijing Olympic Games, started to offer the service in April in its pre-commercial TD-SCDMA network in eight cities including Beijing and Shanghai.
Source: China Daily
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