China Mobile Ramps Up Its 5G Push With Smartphone Orders And Bidding Announcement

China Mobile 5G
A woman checks her mobile phone next to a poster promoting a Chinese project (Photo: Reuters / Jason Lee)

After being granted a commercial 5G license by Chinese regulators, one of China's largest carriers, China Mobile, is now implementing its next steps to build its long-planned 5G network. To test the connectivity, stability, and integrity of its networks, China Mobile has reportedly now purchased its first batch of test-use 5G handsets and other internet-of-things (IoT) devices.

China Mobile has reportedly purchased 10,100 pieces of 5G smartphones from major Chinese manufacturers. The move comes at the heels of China's recent push to accelerate the country's adoption of high-speed wireless networks.

The goal of the drive to adopt 5G technology is to make China one of the world's biggest 5G markets by 2025.

The establishment of 5G networks in the country will further drive its economy with the additional of data-intensive applications for various industries.

This will include autonomous driving, IoT devices, better manufacturing, telemedicine, and other technologies. China is currently trying to catch up with countries such as South Korea and the United States, which have already established small-scale commercial 5G applications.

According to reports that cited sources close to the matter, China Mobile has approached various domestic manufacturers to supply it with their latest 5G handsets.

China Mobile reportedly ordered 5,000 units from Huawei, 2,000 units from Xiaom and ZTE, 1,000 units from Oppo, and 100 units from Vivo. China Mobile has also reportedly placed an order for CPE devices from ZTE and Huawei. These devices essentially convert 5G signals to Wi-Fi signals.

Apart from ordering test 5G smartphones from major domestic manufacturers, China Mobile has also recently started accepting bids for the construction of the first phase of its 5G initiative. China Mobile is reportedly preparing a budget of around $2.79 billion for the first phase, which should mark the official kickoff of the country's 5G network.

China Mobile announced a notice for the planned bidding on its website earlier in the week. The notice included the proper requirements for those who are interested in bidding for the various projects. The projects are divided into two categories.

The first category is for the design and building of the wireless networks, while the second category is for various research and feasibility studies.

The telecommunication service provider has apparently increased its initially planned investment size into the endeavor, signifying its intention to follow China's mandate for quick establishment of the ultra-fast wireless network.

The telecommunications firm is planning to make its 5G wireless networks commercially available in over 40 Chinese cities by the end of the year.

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