China Mobile has stepped up its cooperation with handset makers and local channel partners, in hopes of increasing its 3G market share and gearing up for its upcoming 4G launch.
The China Dailycited China Mobile president Li Yue as saying that the company aims to increase TD-SCDMA terminal sales to over 100 million units in 2013 - 80% of which will be smartphones - from the estimated 60 million units this year.
As part of its plan for 4G, China Mobile will also commence 2013 TD-LTE terminal procurement in over 100 cities in the fourth quarter this year, with plans to order more than 200,000 TD-LTE devices, including data cards and mobile phones. The company earlier has invited public bidding for 34, 700 TD-LTE terminals to be put into network service tests.
“We hope mobile phone makers will launch more TD handsets with high quality and innovative technologies. China Mobile will also expand products and services distribution channels, to allow customers to buy TD devices from both our outlets and partners' sales networks,” Li said.
China Mobile earlier signed strategic cooperation agreements with local consumer electronics chain stores, such as Suning Appliance Co Ltd and Gome to widen its channels for the sales of TD-SCDMA handsets.
Industry watchers expect the move would help China Mobile to compete against China Unicom and China Telecom in the 3G market, which is now an evenly-matched three-horse race. As of August, China Mobile had 72.1 million 3G users, while China Unicom and China Telecom had 63.7 million and 56.4 million clients, respectively