Challenges slow broadband price cut over short term


USERS of broadband services in China will have to bear with the relatively high prices which will not be greatly reduced over the short term due to challenges, a senior official with the industry regulator said yesterday.

Shang Bing, vice minister of industry and information technology, cited the lack of investment in rural regions and people's resistance to allow the siting of base stations in resident communities, which is necessary for network upgrading in urban regions, as bumps holding back a price cut.

"The price will drop with the increased user base," Shang said during a broadcast speech yesterday. "But there are no legal reasons for us to force telecommunications carriers to cut prices now."

By the end of this year, over 50 percent of Chinese users will be able to access broadband service speed of 4 megabytes per second or above, compared with 40 percent now. The broadband penetration rate in China will rise from 29 percent to 34 percent, the ministry said.

China has set a broadband user base target of 250 million by the end of 2015, up 60 percent from now. The urban broadband speed may reach 20 megabytes per second, five to 10 times faster than current pace.

The Beijing-based Data Center of China Internet said 91 percent of users had broadband speeds of under 400 kilobits per second in the third quarter of last year. The average cost of a 1-megabyte-per-second bandwidth on China's mainland is four times the equivalent cost in the US and above 400 times that of Hong Kong.

The mainland's three telecom carriers also plan to build 2 million wireless hot spots for mobile devices like iPad.


2005- All Rights Reserved 京ICP备05069564号-1 京公网安备1101054484号