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4G underpins China Mobile Q1 growth

China Mobile said it is at “a critical stage” in its development, as it promised to meet growing demand with a continued focus on costs.

In its earnings statement for the first quarter ending 31 March, it said there is a “relatively high demand for resources from various fronts including the growth of 4G business, the development of wireline broadband, the expansion of corporate customer market as well as the deployment of emerging business”.

The operator added it will “spare no effort in enhancing cost efficiency across its operations and promoting more efficient use of resources”.

China Mobile is facing a number of market conditions which could impact its results in future, not least a decision to end domestic roaming charges later in 2017. It is also contending with a government push to increase access to high-speed data and reduce charges, although its latest figures show mobile ARPU increased 1.6 per cent year-on-year.

Total voice usage declined, as the substitution impact of over-the-top businesses intensified.

China Mobile reported a profit attributable to shareholders of CNY24.8 billion ($3.6 billion), up 3.7 per cent year-on-year. Revenue of CNY184 billion was also up 3.7 per cent.

Service revenue increased 6.1 per cent to CNY160.9 billion, but “products and others” declined 10.7 per cent to CNY23.1 billion, as more customers bought devices through other channels.

The operator ended the period with 856 million mobile customers, of which 568 million – 66 per cent of the total – are signed-up for 4G. It said it “continued to harness its 4G leading position with efforts to steadily expand its 4G customer base as well as preserve and raise 4G customer value”.

It also had 85.7 million fixed line customers.(source from mobileworldlive)