China Mobile had 5.32 million 5G customers. China Telecom and China Unicom each have about 1.75 million. Almost all have signed up in the last couple of weeks. The pace will presumably pick up after the opening later this month. The monthly price is US$20-30/month. Phone prices are down to US$520-700. The telcos are giving only modest subsidies, typically $50-70.

Those figures have been widely reported in the Chinese press but not officially announced. These are mega-billion dollar companies with audited financials and stock listings. I believe the figures are accurate. If so, China will almost certainly have more than 25 million subs by yearend. A low prediction for 2020 is 100 million; 206 is a plausible working estimate. Data is still very limited, however; we'll know more by the end of November.

Korea reported 2 million phones sold by August. The carriers have confirmed 5 million expected by yearend,

One confusion: Some articles report this as 10 million "reservations" as people wait for phones.


dave ask


Rethinking Jan 27: Coronavirus could invalidate all projections. I reported on AIDS for 2 years. This could be worse because it spreads in air. Let us hope and pray.

Details on all 5G phones, as prices drop to $285 ** All actual 5G networks worldwide ** Facebook ordered to repost Italian fascist page. ** Apple China sales down 35%** Qorvo sees 300M 5G 2020 & 750M 2023 mmWave <10%

** Bharti demands India Gov more than double prices and enforce cartel. Sunil Mittal "Situation is dire. It is a matter of survival for everyone." ** Wi-Fi 6 meets ITU 5G criteria @stephenjcrowley ** Samsung $8B for Chinese memory plants ** Morgan paying billions for Altice fiber

Dec 10 Sprint bringing $300-500 5G phones to US 2020. Nokia, Lenovo, HMD ** H., Apple, and AMD doing 5 nm test runs on TSMC's 5 nm. Early results are 15-30% better than 7 nm ** AT&T low-band 5G built to >65% US. Speeds slower than 4G at launch. ** 

Verizon CEO Ronan Dunne: >1/2 VZ 5G "will approximate to a good 4G service" Midband in "low hundreds" Mbps ** CFO John Stephens says AT&T is going to cut capex soon. ** Huawei in 16 days sold 1,000,000 5G Mate 20s.  


Welcome  Asia is installing hundreds of thousands of 5G radios and adding 5G subs by the tens of millions. The west is far behind. 200,000,000 in 2020

The demand is there, and most of the technology works. Meanwhile, the hype is unreal. Time for reporting closer to the truth.

I'm Dave Burstein, Editor. I've been reporting telecom since 1999. I love to hear from readers and say thank you when you find an error.

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