China Broadnet – the country’s most recently licenced operator – launched 5G services, joining its three big-name rivals in offering the latest generation of mobile technology.

Multiple news outlets in China reported on the formal service launch, which the country’s state-owned press service Xinhua noted took place at the Museum of the Communist Party of China earlier today (27 June).

The company already supplies cable services and became the country’s fourth operator when formally inaugurated in 2020, having previously acquired a licence from authorities. It was initially known as China Broadcasting Network before rebranding earlier this year.

Xinhua added the launch constituted a “breakthrough” in integration of national cable TV networks and 5G. It noted among the aims of the newcomer was to accelerate development of a new generation broadcast service and “national cultural network” based on 5G.

Analysis of the launch cited by news website Global Times highlighted the company was sharing 5G infrastructure with China Mobile, while playing down the competitive implications of the launch on rival mobile operators due to the relatively small market share of the newcomer.

Incumbent progress
China’s big three mobile players signed up an additional 30.1 million 5G package subscribers in May, taking their combined figure to 899.3 million and accounting for the vast majority of the global 5G total.

China Mobile added 18.2 million to end May with 495.1 million 5G connections. Rival China Telecom added 7 million in May, taking its total to 224.5 million, while China Unicom closed May with 179.7 million.