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The China Academy of Information and Communications Technology (CAICT), a government think-tank, published an article on Friday, saying that China’s 5G smartphone shipments from January to December 2021 reached 266 million units, up 63.5% year-on-year, accounting for 75.9% of smartphone shipments in the same period, far higher than a global average of 40.7%.
With the substantial increase in smartphone shipments, China’s improvement of network coverage and terminal performance have promoted the steady increase in the number of 5G users. As of the end of November 2021, data shows that the total number of mobile phone users in the three major telecommunications enterprises reached 1.64 billion, of which 497 million were connected to 5G mobile phone terminals, a net increase of 298 million over the end of the previous year.
A total of 671 5G terminals in China have been licensed as of the end of December 2021, including 491 5G smartphone terminals, 161 wireless data terminals and 19 vehicle-mounted wireless terminals.
In July 2021, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, together with another nine ministries, issued a ”Set Sail” Action Plan for 5G Applications (2021-2023). The plan lays out the direction for the development of 5G applications over the next three years.
Statistics show that, as of the end of December 2021, several provinces and cities have issued 583 policy documents to support the development of 5G technology, including 70 at the provincial level, 264 at the municipal level and 249 at the district and county level. These policies have promoted the uptake of 5G technology.
By the end of November 2021, a total of 1.396 million 5G base stations have been built in China, covering all cities above the prefectural level, and more than 97% of counties and 50% of towns in China. Telecom operators have built and shared more than 800,000 5G base stations to promote the efficiency of 5G networks.
Significant achievements have also been made in the construction of virtual private networks in the 5G industry. The 5G industry virtual private network provides necessary network conditions for enterprises in vertical industries such as industry, mining, electric power, logistics, education and medical care to make full use of 5G technology to optimize production management and empower transformation and upgrading. Up until now, more than 2,300 5G industry virtual private networks have been built and commercialized in China.