China meets 5G network goals, key to post-Covid recovery
Beijing, Sep 24 (efe-epa).- China wanted to be the leader in the national deployment of 5G networks and seems to have achieved this as despite the pandemic and potential problems for the country’s main supplier Huawei the development of the infrastructure is on schedule.
The Asian country is close to meeting its target of installing 500,000 base stations (antennas) this year after already placing more than 480,000, which is 96 percent of the target Beijing set itself.
This data was made public at the beginning of the month by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), which also announced that China has more than 60 million users on these networks and more than 100 million devices connected to them.
Chinese brands such as Huawei, Xiaomi, Oppo and Vivo will reduce the prices of their low- and medium-range smartphones with 5G support to about $147 in a bid to compete for their share of the pie, according to the local press.
Guang Yang, from consultancy firm Strategy Analytics, said there is no doubt that China is the “absolute leader” at a global level in terms of network scale, client portfolio and progress in the deployment of standalone 5G or independent 5G, which allows for very low latencies, especially for corporate clients.
The analyst told Efe that the three main Chinese operators, China Mobile, China Unicom and China Telecom, have already met their objectives for this year in terms of 5G network deployment.
“The question now is how far they would like to go beyond that goal,” he added.
There have also been difficulties with the project, such as problems finding places to install antennas, as they need to install more than with 4G networks because the new generation operates on a higher frequency band.
Some local governments have allowed them to be placed in public buildings and some, such as Shenzhen in the southeast, have given subsidies of up to $1,473 for each base station installed.
Another issue is electricity consumption and Guang said each 5G base station consumes between three and four times more energy than 4G, which dramatically increases the costs of operators, so the executive is considering reducing electricity costs for these antennas.