3GSM logo.gifReflecting
the tectonic shifts in the mobile phone industry, next week's 3GSM
World Congress will have a China Pavilion for the first time.

As the organisers of this mammoth jamboree pointout, China is now
the world's largest mobile market with 460m mobile phone subscribers at
the end of 2006 and more mobiles than fixed lines.

China Mobile, the world's largest mobile operator, had the lion's
share with 300m customers and added 50m new subscribers just in 2006.
So, in one year, China Mobile has added more new customers than the
installed base of a country the size of Spain, which has 44m
subscribers.

China is making headlines for other reasons. The long-overdue award of the country's 3G licences — see this earlier EngagingChina
story — is expected during 2007, closely followed by the Beijing
Olympics in 2008, so its hardly surprising that the eyes of the world
will be focused on the Chinese market over the coming years.

The introduction of the China Pavilion at the 3GSM World Congress
event, which once again takes place in the Spanish city of Barcelona,
reflects the importance this burgeoning market has on the mobile
industry. It will be interesting to see just how many of the
predominantly US and European exhibitors choose to focus on the China
story.

EngagingChina will be attending 3GSM in Barcelona
next week and, WiFi coverage and schedules permitting, we will
endeavour to bring readers our own particular take on the countless
announcements and presentations that will be made at the event.


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