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China Unicom: Tianjin Mobile Artificially Inflating Portability Figures

CCID, 1/12/11

A China Unicom (NYSE: CHU; 0762.HK; 600050.SH) employee, Liu Xiaoying, recently alleged on his microblog that China Mobile employees in Tianjin have been purchasing Unicom SIM cards and immediately switching to China Mobile in order to game number portability trial statistics. However, in a telephone interview with CCID, an anonymous Tianjin Mobile employee dismissed the allegations saying that number portability is only available to active users who have been subscribed to a network for six months or more. A Tianjin Unicom employee said, however, that Tianjin Mobile requires every employee to switch at least two accounts per day, and the activity is easily detectable as an account is open one day and transferred the next, something most users would never do.

According to a source at the Binhai District branch of Tianjin Mobile, on December 7, 2010, every request to Unicom to transfer to China Mobile was denied by China Unicom. Following that, request to transfer to China Mobile were all rejected by the China Unicom branch in Jinghai District.

According to Tianjin Mobile, as of December 22, approximately 13,000 subscribers had requested to transfer to China Mobile, with approximately 58.06% being declined, peaking at 96.64% for a single day. Meanwhile, nearly 70% of a total 13,100 subscribers were approved to transfer from China Mobile to another carrier.

Keywords: scandal China Mobile China Unicom wireless number portability 0762.HK 600050.SH CHU CHL 0941.HK

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