China Broadnet reaches nationwide coverage with 5G: Report

China Broadnet had officially launched 5G services in June

China Broadnet, China’s fourth-largest telecom operator, has reached nationwide coverage with its 5G network, according to a report by state-run newspaper Global Times.

The report stated that China Broadnet officially launched commercial 5G network services in Xizang Autonomous Region and Qinghai Province, expanding its 5G services to all 31 provincial-level regions.

According to the report, China Broadnet owns spectrum in the 700 MHz band, which offers coverage advantages compared to higher bands.

Both China Telecom and China Unicom had previously received 100 megahertz in the 3.5 GHz band, while China Mobile had secured 160 megahertz in the 2.6 GHz band and 100 megahertz in the 4.9 GHz band.

“Almost all of China’s areas could be covered by 5G networks by building about 500,000 700 MHz 5G base stations. For the 3.5 GHz spectrum, operators must build many more base stations to achieve nationwide 5G network coverage,” independent tech analyst Xiang Ligang told Global Times.

China Broadnet had officially launched 5G services in June.

The operator already supplies cable services and became the country’s fourth operator when formally inaugurated in 2020, having previously acquired a license for commercial 5G services in 2019. The carrier was initially known as China Broadcasting Network before rebranding.

According to previous reports, China Broadnet will use 5G infrastructure owned by China Mobile, the largest telco in the country.

Last year, China Broadnet and China Mobile said they aim to initially deploy 400,000 5G base stations as part of the companies’ efforts to launch a shared 5G network.

In May 2020, the company had announced plans to deploy a nationwide 700 MHz 5G network in cooperation with China Mobile.

Under the terms of the deal, China Broadnet has access to China Mobile’s 2.6 GHz network and receives guidance and investment from the mobile operator. China Mobile will share its 2.6 GHz network on a paid basis, with China Broadnet able to access its 2G, 4G and 5G infrastructure prior to the launch of the 700 MHz network.

Chinese mobile operators have already deployed over 2.1 million 5G base stations across the country, local news agency Xinhua reported, citing data from the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT).

The number of 5G base stations as of the end of August represented 19.8% of total mobile base stations in China, up 5.5 percentage points compared to the end of last year, according to the MIIT.

A total of 677,000 5G base stations were built by local mobile operators in the first eight months of this year, according to the ministry.

Chinese operators recorded a net gain of 26.2 million 5G subscribers last month, according to the carriers’ latest available figures.

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