How’s China’s 5G rollout going? Data from the country’s largest telecom infrastructure operator may shed some light.
Hong Kong-listed China Tower Corp. Ltd. received 65,000 orders by the end of June to build base stations for the next generation 5G wireless networks for the country’s top three telecom carriers, the company said Wednesday.
This year’s 5G construction focuses on upgrading existing base stations, and 100,000 orders can be expected, said Tong Jilu, chairman of China Tower, at a briefing on the company’s half-year results.
Chinese regulators in June issued the first 5G telecom service licenses to four companies amid an intensifying global race for the ultra-high-speed wireless technology that will power a new generation of data-intensive services like autonomous driving and telemedicine.
Recipients included the country’s three major wireless carriers, China Mobile, China Unicom and China Telecom, as well as the more recently formed China Broadcasting Network Corp.
Tong said China Tower hasn’t started working with China Broadcasting on 5G projects but will be willing to cooperate whenever there is demand. China Broadcasting has yet to publish any plan for its 5G business.
During the first six months this year, China Tower booked nearly 38 billion yuan ($5.4 billion) of revenue, up 7.5% from the same period last year. Net profit more than doubled to 2.5 billion yuan.
By the end of June, China Tower operated 1.95 million telecom towers across the country, up 4% year-on-year.