China's Telcos Lure Wannabe 5G Users, But Lack of Pricing Is Still a Barrier to Uptake
Liao Shumin
/SOURCE : yicai
China's Telcos Lure Wannabe 5G Users, But Lack of Pricing Is Still a Barrier to Uptake

(Yicai Global) Oct. 9 -- China's top three telecoms carriers attracted more than 10 million potential users to their fifth-generation wireless network packages in less than three weeks. But they have yet to released pricing details, damping enthusiasm for the shift to faster mobile internet services.

Fourth-generation plans are likely to seem very cheap in comparison to 5G ones, The Paper reported, citing Fu Liang, an independent telecoms analyst. So far the three major operators have kept their 5G price tags hidden.

China Mobile has attracted just over 5.9 million 5G subscribers, China Telecom almost 2.1 million and China Unicom about 2 million, the report said. But not everyone who has reserved one of their 5G plans is bound to actually buy it, according to Fu.

On Sept. 20, China Mobile started taking bookings for its 5G packages with a 30 percent discount for long-term clients, as well as offering vouchers for 5G handset buyers. Its two rivals joined the fray before the end of September.

Prices could range from CNY190 (USD26.65) a month to CNY599, The Paper said, citing industry insiders.

The promise of a superfast internet may be exaggerated. By the end of this year, the three operators are expected to have more than 100,000 non-independent networking base stations but no standalone stations, which means that much 5G traffic would still be carried by 4G networks, Fu said, adding that this could affect both 4G and 5G user experiences.

Editor: Emmi Laine

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Keywords: 5G Package , Data