How Did Chinese Wireless Carriers Fare In November?

by Trefis Team
China Telecom
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November proved to be a reasonably strong month for the Chinese wireless industry, with the three major carriers adding a cumulative 8.2 million subscribers. While this was about 15% below the October 2017 figures, it is well ahead of the 2 million adds in November 2016 when the real name registration requirement caused some disruption in the market.  China Telecom (NYSE:CHA), the smallest of the three in terms of wireless subscribers, continued to fare well, adding about 3.1 million, while market leader China Mobile  (NYSE:CHL) added 3 million subscribers for the month. China Unicom (NYSE:CHU) added a total of 2.1 million subscribers, driven by its improving 4G coverage and steps to overhaul its sales and marketing model. On the 4G front, the three players added or migrated a cumulative 15 million subscribers to their 4G services. This is down from levels of about 21 million in the year-ago period. The slowing growth is attributed to saturation in the high-speed wireless space, as around 69% of Chinese wireless subscribers are on 4G services currently, up from about 55% in the year-ago period.

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