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Qualcomm CEO: China 4G rollout a major driver

Updated: 2013-09-27 21:40

China's entry into the fourth generation telecommunications technology era will be a major driver for Qualcomm Inc' sales in the country, according to Qualcomm's chairman.

China Mobile, the nation's biggest telecom operator, is going to form a much closer business relationship with Qualcomm, because the carrier may purchase many smartphones equipped with Qualcomm's LTE chipsets.

At the 2G and 3G stages, Qualcomm mainly cooperated with two smaller Chinese telecom operators - China Telecom Corp Ltd and China Unicom (Hong Kong) Ltd.

“China is one of the key places where we have partners and our own operations,” said Paul Jacobs, chairman and chief executive officer of Qualcomm Inc, in an exclusive interview with China Daily.

“We're not selling much into China Mobile right now. With LTE 4G technology, we'll be able to sell more into China Mobile,” Jacobs said.

China Mobile has a huge subscriber base of more than 740 million people. A closer business tie with the carrier will undoubtedly broaden Qualcomm's footprint in China.

“Customers want to buy 4G-ready devices to prepare for the arrival of 4G, and that's good for us. We haven't projected our 2014 in terms of growth rates but I expect 4G will be a major differentiator for us in China,” Jacobs said.

Qualcomm previously said it expects double-digit growth over the next five years - and China is going to be a major engine for the company's future development.

After Qualcomm recently unveiled its smartwatch in the United States, Jacobs said the company is very likely to introduce the device to China next year.

“Right now we intend to build the Toq smartwatch in a small way,” he said. Therefore, the initial price for Toq could be expensive. Jacobs said he hopes to introduce Toq to China with a partner. When the device is shipped in larger volumes, the price will go down.