China's mobile phone users top 879m in February

Updated: 2011-03-25 16:55
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BEIJING - More and more Chinese are disconnecting fixed-line telephones and turning to cell phones for communication, according to statistics released by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) on Friday.

China's mobile telecommunication operators added 19.83 million new subscribers in the first two months of this year, bringing the number of the country's cell phone users to 878.83 million, MIIT said in a statement on its website.

Fixed-line telecommunication companies, however, lost 918,000 fixed-line telephone users in the January-February period, partly because these subscribers pay a fixed monthly fee of around 18 yuan ($2.74) even if they make no phone calls.

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China reported 1.17 billion telephone users at the end of February, compared to its population of 1.34 billion.

China's third-generation (3G) cell phone service subscribers expanded to 55.99 million by the end of February, according to MIIT.

The entire telecommunication industry generated 170.33 billion yuan ($25.97 billion) in business revenue in January-February, up 14 percent year on year.

Of every 100 Chinese people, 64.4 were using cell phones in 2010, compared to 56.3 users in 2009.