2010: A mobile odyssey for 580 million Chinese

'If only we could break China… and BRIC'
Written by Tony Hallett, Contributor

'If only we could break China… and BRIC'

The number of mobile phone users in China is set to reach 580 million by the end of the decade, making it by far the largest single market in the world.

That figure comes from a report by visiongain which also forecasts end-of-2005 figures of 386 million in that country.

Mobile phone usage in China has exploded since the late 1990s, with providers China Mobile and China Unicom leading the way.

Right now penetration stands at 25.7 per cent, according to visiongain, but while there are many more new users to be signed up, ARPU (average revenue per user) is decreasing.

The move to 3G is seen as one answer to that. But aping second-generation growth, it is likely that as the country moves to third-generation technology - it currently lags behind Europe, North America and most notably some of its east Asian neighbours - it will turn to a mix of technologies.

In addition to mobile use, China is also soon to become the number one country in the world for broadband connections, according to recent DSL Forum statistics.

Telecoms equipment suppliers are increasingly targeting what they call the 'BRIC' grouping of large nations for future mass market growth, BRIC standing for Brazil, Russia, India and China.

Editorial standards