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China adds 40 million internet users in first half 2009

22 июля 2009

China's Internet users numbered 338 million at the end of June this year, according to L'Atelier BNP Paribas en Asie, citing the China Internet Network Information Center.

This translates to 40 million new regular Internet users in China in the first six months of this year. And there is still room for growth, given that Internet penetration stood at 25.5% at the end of June, up from 22.6% at the end of 2008.

Mobile networks and devices play an important role in providing access to the Internet. Fully 155 million people in China access the Internet via mobile, although not necessarily exclusively; many mobile Internet consumers also used fixed infrastructure, according to BNP Paribas.

And although the spread of 3G networks and devices in the course of 2009 has helped drive mobile Internet take up, consumer enthusiasm is currently limited.

A total of 65% of Internet users do not intend to use the mobile phone to access the Internet, according to BNP Paribas.

One of the reasons is speed and handset availability. Of those 14.8% of Internet users that expect to begin using their mobile phone to surf the Internet, 49% expect to do so over a 3G network.

However, Chinese operators are still building out 3G infrastructure, following licence awards in January. And officially Apple's iPhone, which has helped drive mobile Internet usage in the West, has yet to launch in China.

Nevertheless there are approximately 2 million 3G handsets in circulation on the market, according to the BNP Paribas report.

Meanwhile Chinese operators are investing concurrently in fixed broadband, following last year's market restructuring to create three fixed and mobile operators: China Telecom, China Unicom and China Mobile.

This has made China the biggest market in Asia Pacific for multiservice access platforms and IP DSLAMs, which is in turn the world's largest market for such broadband aggregation hardware, according to a report published yesterday by Infonetics Research.

Local vendor ZTE leads the MSAP market in China, while Huawei leads the IP DSLAM market, according to Infonetics.

Still, European vendors have also made some headway in the Chinese broadband market, with Alcatel-Lucent announcing on Tuesday it has won a contract to provide China Mobile with GPON solutions in 10 cities.

Ericsson earlier this month also announced contracts to build FTTH networks for all three Chinese operators.


Источник: Total Telecom

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