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China Mobile Releases Detailed TD-SCDMA Trial Plan

Marbridge Consulting, 3/28/08

At a press conference convened today by China Mobile (NYSE: CHL; 0941.HK) to announce TD-SCDMA commercial trial arrangements, the operator explained that as of April 1 it would officially begin public trials of commercial TD-SCDMA networks in Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, Shenyang, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Xiamen, and Qinhuangdao.

During the trial period, users of the TD-SCDMA network will enjoy a 50% discount on all communications fees. China Mobile will provide far greater incentives for its channel partners than it does with GSM, with commissions for TD-SCDMA numbers to be twice those given for GSM numbers, and also large sales incentives.

For its first batch of users, China Mobile will invite 20,000 representative customers from different industries and backgrounds to participate in the testing of TD-SCDMA handsets, networks, and services. The company will provide data cards and handsets priced between RMB 2,000 and 4,000 free of charge, and provide RMB 800 per month in service fee rebates to users.

China Mobile has chosen to call its TD-SCDMA cards "cutting-edge cards," and to use the 157 prefix for the numbers. China Mobile has said that although manufacturers have priced their TD-SCDMA handsets between RMB 2000 and 4000, a number of products will sell for as little as RMB 100 to 200.

The base monthly charge for a TD-SCDMA account is RMB 50. Videoconferencing over the network will be charged at RMB 0.6 per minute. Reportedly, China Mobile will offer three service plans for TD-SCDMA users, priced at RMB 20 for 150 minutes, RMB 58 for 350 minutes, and RMB 88 for 600 minutes.

Keywords: 3G marketing mobile phone pricing tariffs subsidy data card 0941.HK Beijing China Mobile CHL EDGE GSM Guangzhou Qinhuangdao Shanghai Shenyang Shenzhen TD-SCDMA Tianjin trial videoconferencing wireless Xiamen

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