'Happy New Year' text messages expected to reach 14b

Updated: 2007-02-19 08:59

China's top two telecommunications operators estimated on Sunday that Chinese people would send around 14 billion festival text messages during the seven-day Lunar New Year holiday.

China Mobile and China Unicom's statisticians said they had optimized their networks to avoid possible message jams.

Statistics from the Ministry of Information showed that in 2006, Chinese people sent 429.6 billion short messages through mobile phones, a daily average of up to 1.2 billion, which translates into an income of over 100 million yuan (12.82 million US dollars) for telecommunications operators.

During the last Spring Festival, Chinese people sent out a total of 12.6 billion short messages in eight days - more than 30 for each of the 400 million mobile phone subscribers.

In 2006, China's mobile phone subscribers increased 5.64 million on a monthly average, bringing the total number to over 460 million, 35.3 percent of the total population.

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