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China Mobile Communications Corporation
Company typeChinese state-owned
Hang Seng Component
PredecessorChina Telecom (Hong Kong) Limited[1]
Founded3 September 1997; 26 years ago (1997-09-03)[2]
HeadquartersNo 29, Financial Street , Xicheng District, ,
Area served
Mainland China, Hong Kong (as CMHK)
Key people
Bing Shang (Chairman)
Li Yue (CEO)[3]
ProductsFixedline telephony
Mobile telephony
Broadband internet
Digital television
Internet television
RevenueIncrease RMB 388.87 billion (2017)[4]
Increase RMB 81.39 billion (2017)[4]
Increase RMB 62.72 billion (2017)[4]
Total assetsIncrease RMB 959.03 billion (2017)[4]
OwnerGovernment of China
Number of employees
493,000 (2017)[4]
China Mobile
Simplified Chinese中国移动通信集团公司
Traditional Chinese中國移動通信集團公司
Alternative Chinese name
Simplified Chinese中国移动有限公司
Traditional Chinese中國移動有限公司
Second alternative Chinese name
Simplified Chinese中国移动
Traditional Chinese中國移動
Literal meaningChina Mobile

China Mobile (Chinese: 中国移动; pinyin: Zhōngguó Yídòng), officially China Mobile Communications Corporation (Chinese: 中国移动通信集团公司; pinyin: Zhōngguó Yídòng Tōngxìn Jítuán Gōngsī) is a Chinese state-owned[5] telecommunication corporation that provides mobile voice and multimedia services[6] through its nationwide mobile telecommunications network across mainland China.[2] China Mobile is the largest mobile telecommunications corporation by market capitalization,[7] and also the world's largest mobile phone operator by total number of subscribers, with over 873 million subscribers as of August 2017.[8]

The core subsidiary of the group, "China Mobile Limited", is listed on both the NYSE and the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.[2] China Mobile also operates China Mobile Hong Kong, a subsidiary mobile network in Hong Kong. As of August 2017, China Mobile's total market value stood at RMB 1.57 trillion.[4]


A state-owned enterprise directly controlled by the government of the People's Republic of China[5] and also a public company that is listed on the NYSE and the Hong Kong stock exchanges,[2] China Mobile has dominated Chinese mobile services since its inception. As of 2010, China Mobile controls the vast majority of its domestic mobile services market with a 70% market share.[9] China Unicom and China Telecom have 20% and 10% shares, respectively.[9]

Incorporated in 1997 as China Telecom (Hong Kong) Limited,[1] China Mobile was born from the 1999 break-up of China Telecom.[10] (This company continues to provide mobile services, however.[9])

State control

The company likely enjoys substantial protectionist benefits from China's government[11] but also experiences frequent government intervention in its business affairs.[12] Government control is maintained through a presumably government-owned holding company, China Mobile Communications Corporation (CMCC), that owns 100 percent ownership of China Mobile (HK) Group Limited,[13] which in turn holds over seventy percent ownership of China Mobile–the remainder being controlled by public investors.[2] Established in 2000,[13] CMCC is China Mobile Ltd's current parent company as of 2011.[14]

Rural subscriber base

Wang Jianzhou, Chairman and CEO during the Market Insight: Frontier Markets plenary session in Tianjin, China, 28 September 2008.[15]
display of China Mobile phones, 2010

China Mobile has historically held a greater share of the rural market than competitors.[16] By 2006, its network had expanded to provide reception to 97% of the Chinese population,[17] and the company has since seen a sustained stream of new, rural mobile customers.[16]

It also offers services targeted at the rural market including an agricultural information service, which facilitates a variety of activities such as the sale and purchase of agricultural products, access to market prices for produce and crops, wire transfers, bank withdrawals, and payments, etc.[18]

Overseas activities

The company branched out in 2007 with the purchase of Paktel in Pakistan[19] launching the Zong brand there a year later.[20]

In 2013, China Mobile eyed expansion into Myanmar expressing interest in bidding for one of two licences on offer in a partnership with Vodafone although this plan ultimately fell through.[21]

Domestic acquisitions

In May 2008, the company took over China Tietong, a fixed-line telecom[22] and the then third-largest broadband ISP in China[23] adding Internet services to its core business of mobile services.


China Mobile operates a GSM network,[24] which encompasses all 31 provinces, autonomous regions, and directly administered municipalities in Mainland China and includes Hong Kong, too.[2] GPRS is utilized for data transmission.[25]


The company controls 70% of the Chinese mobile market but a far smaller percentage of the 3G market.[9] As of May 2012, its nearly 60 million 3G subscribers account for roughly 9% of its total subscriber base,[26] which is an increase from 3% in 2010.[9]

Its 3G network, still under construction in 2010, utilizes the TD-SCDMA standard, which China Mobile helped develop. 3G service is available in all of the 4 direct-controlled municipalities and most of the 283 prefecture-level cities in China as of 2010.[27]


As of 2010, China Mobile has debuted small-scale 4G demonstration networks using a variant of 3GPP's Long Term Evolution, TD-LTE, and has plans for larger, citywide demonstration networks in the future.[27] As of May 2012, such networks are in operation.[26]

While prior iPhone models couldn't use the China Mobile network due to the chipset relying on WCDMA-based networks, talks to carry the then unreleased 4G iPhone (iPhone 5) began in mid-2012.[26] The iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s were sold through China Mobile starting in January 2014.[28]


In 2003 and again in 2007, China Mobile provided mobile services on Mount Everest.[29]

Spratly Isles coverage

In May 2011, China Mobile announced its network now includes the controversial Spratly Islands.[30]

Nokia deal

In October 2014, Nokia and China Mobile signed a $970 million framework deal for delivery between 2014 and 2015.[31][32]

Service brands

China Mobile uses other names to differentiate its offerings.

Mainland China

A China Mobile store in Shenzhen

Mobile services are available in Mainland China under several brands as of 2007.[33] As of 2013, the below brands are scheduled to be slowly phased out and replaced by an all-encompassing new brand name—And[34]—whose logo combines an exclamation point, the Chinese character for "peace" (Chinese: 和, Hanyu Pinyin: ), as well as the English word "and".[35]

A sign near a China Mobile fiber-optic cable reminds of the legal responsibility for damaging telecommunication cables

(Chinese: 神州行, Hanyu Pinyin: Shénzhōuxíng Rough translation: "Travel across China"[36] (lit. "travel the holy states")): a basic prepaid mobile phone service more heavily marketed in rural areas[17]


(Chinese: 全球通, Hanyu Pinyin: Quánqiútōng Rough translation: "Global Connect"): subscription[36] flagship brand[37]


(Chinese: 动感地带, Hanyu Pinyin: Dònggǎndìdài Rough translation: "Dynamic Area"): a premium prepaid service popular with youths[37]


A 3G service brand[35] (likely introduced post-2007)

Hong Kong

CMHK is a wholly owned subsidiary of China Mobile. It offers GSM, GPRS, EDGE, HSPA+ (MVNO), FD-LTE and TD-LTE technologies to customers in this the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.[38]


Main article: Zong Pakistan


The company was the main sponsor of China's national basketball team at the 2010 FIBA World Championship in Turkey.[39]


  1. ^ a b Milestone China Mobile Official Site
  2. ^ a b c d e f Company Profile China Mobile Official Site
  3. ^ "People: China Mobile Ltd". Reuters. Retrieved 26 November 2015.
  4. ^ a b c d e f "China Mobile Interim Report 2017" (PDF).
  5. ^ a b Strait deals The Economist, 7 May 2009
  6. ^ Company Profile Archived 4 June 2009 at the Wayback Machine CMCC Official Site
  7. ^ FT Global 500 (PDF). The Financial Times. March 2011. Retrieved 4 January 2012.
  8. ^ "Operation Data". China Mobile. 31 August 2017.
  9. ^ a b c d e China Mobile Still Dominates, but Faces Competition in 3G. morningstar.com, 22 October 2010
  10. ^ Asian economic and political issues, Volume 8 (page 68) Frank Columbus, Nova Publishers, 2003 (Google Books)
  11. ^ Asian Economic and Political Issues, Volume 8 (page 54) 2003. Frank Columbus. Nova Publishers. (Google Books)
  12. ^ Asian Economic and Political Issues, Volume 8 (page 84) 2003. Frank Columbus. Nova Publishers. (Google Books)
  13. ^ a b CMCC Profile CMCC Official Site (Archive.org cache)
  14. ^ China Mobile, MTR, SJM Holdings, ZTE: Hong Kong Stocks Preview By Kana Nishizawa, bloomberg.com – 17 May 2011 5:54 PM PT
  15. ^ Copyright World Economic Forum
  16. ^ a b "Chinese Telecom: China Mobile Leads the Way". Bloomberg BusinessWeek. 5 August 2009
  17. ^ a b Homepage > Brand & Products > Business Review Archived 22 August 2009 at the Wayback Machine CMCC Official Site
  18. ^ 2008 Corporate Social Responsibility Report – Rural Program Archived 8 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine CMCC Official Site
  19. ^ CMCC Officially Enter Pakistani Telecommunication Market, 25 March 2007 Archived 1 June 2009 at the Wayback Machine CMCC Official Site
  20. ^ a b ZoNG the first international brand of China Mobile being launched in Pakistan, 5 April 2008 Archived 11 June 2009 at the Wayback Machine CMCC Official Site
  21. ^ "Vodafone and China Mobile pull out of Myanmar race". reuters.com. Thomson Reuters. 31 May 2013. Retrieved 10 April 2016.
  22. ^ Telecoms in China The Economist, 29 May 2008
  23. ^ China Mobile to take over China Tietong Telecom
  24. ^ Beijing Olympic Games spur another technological leap forward Archived 28 August 2009 at the Wayback Machine CMCC Official Site, 18 Aug 2008
  25. ^ Homepage > About CMCC > Networks & Technologies Archived 21 August 2009 at the Wayback Machine CMCC Official Site
  26. ^ a b c Lee, Chyen Yee (16 May 2012). "China Mobile in talks with Apple for iPhone". reuters.com. Thompson Reuters. Retrieved 20 May 2012.
  27. ^ a b China Mobile Limited: Annual Report 2010 (PDF). China Mobile Ltd. 2010. pp. 13–14. Retrieved 18 June 2011.
  28. ^ Anthony Ha. "Apple Announces Deal To Bring iPhones To China Mobile Starting On Jan. 17". TechCrunch. AOL. Retrieved 6 August 2015.
  29. ^ For 2003 service, see Everest goes online for anniversary Mary Hennock, bbc.co.uk, Wednesday, 23 April 2003, 04:23 GMT 05:23 UK
  30. ^ Ian Mansfield, 18 May 2011, China Mobile Expands Coverage to the Spratly Islands, Cellular News
  31. ^ "Nokia, China Mobile sign $970 million framework deal" (Press release). Reuters. 10 October 2014.
  32. ^ "Nokia, China Mobile sign $970 million framework deal". Investing.com. 10 October 2014.
  33. ^ "Our Brands". China Mobile. 2007. Archived from the original on 4 December 2010. Retrieved 18 March 2008. (Archive.org cache)
  34. ^ "Leo Burnett Wins Pitch for Telecom Giant China Mobile 'And' Brand". leoburnett.com. Leo Burnett. 12 January 2016. Retrieved 10 April 2016.
  35. ^ a b Jingting, Shen (18 December 2013). "China Mobile launches new 4G service brand". chinadaily.com. China Daily.
  36. ^ a b "DIFFERENCE BETWEEN QUANQIUTONG AND SHENZHOUXING". Wangjianshuo's blog. Shanghai. 19 March 2003. Retrieved 4 January 2012. ((cite conference)): Unknown parameter |booktitle= ignored (|book-title= suggested) (help)
  37. ^ a b Homepage > Brand & Products > Our Brands CMCC Official Site (Archive.org cache)
  38. ^ "Corporate Overview". Archived from the original on 22 August 2015. Retrieved 6 August 2015. ((cite web)): Unknown parameter |deadurl= ignored (|url-status= suggested) (help)
  39. ^ 2010 FIBA World Championship Team photos, FIBA.com, Retrieved 19 July 2016.