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3G service to expand by 2010

CHINA Mobile is to establish an additional 1,000 3G base stations in Shanghai by World Expo 2010, which will then make its 3G network quality equal to the current 2G network, the country's No. 1 telecommunications carrier said yesterday.

The carrier is also to reduce fees and launch new applications, such as laptops with built-in 3G chipsets, based on the home-grown 3G technology TD-SCDMA.

By the end of last year, China Mobile's Shanghai branch had established 3,779 base stations, covering the region within the outer ring, and had attracted about 75,600 users.

The additional 1,000 base stations will raise coverage to more than 95 percent.

"TD-SCDMA may not be the most mature 3G technology but we aim to attract more 3G users through the improved service and new applications," said Zheng Jie, Shanghai Mobile's general manager.

China Mobile's laptops with built-in TD-SCDMA chipsets will be on sale at its local outlets and will allow users to access the Internet anywhere. "People can get a Web-linked laptop at a surprisingly low price, even cheaper than a mobile phone," said Nie Jing, Shanghai Mobile's vice general manager.

Shanghai Mobile will also provide users additional free time for 3G services, Nie said.

China Telecom is to debut its 3G services next month and China Unicom will launch its 3G services in May.

China Mobile is offering phone numbers starting with 188 from today.



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