China Mobile 4G subscriber base reaches 377 million at Q1 2016

China Mobile Limited added 65 million customers to its 4G network in the first quarter of 2016, the operator has revealed in its quarterly report.

Its 4G subscriber base reached 377 million at the end of March 2016, representing about 45% of the overall mobile customer base. Net additional 4G customers for the first quarter reached 64.23 million.

The Group continued to solidify its 4G advantages and accelerated the migration of customers to 4G networks, with strongly promoting sales of 4G terminals.

Driven by the favorable development of 4G services, the Group’s data traffic business continued to grow rapidly. Mobile data traffic increased by 148% compared to the same period last year, revenue structure was further optimized.

China mobile faced further decline in its voice, SMS and MMS services, as the substitution impact of OTT business on traditional communications services continued to intensify. Total voice usage and SMS usage decreased by 1.5% and 10.6%, respectively compared to the same period last year.

Commenting on its strong quarterly performance in a statement, China Mobile said “The Group is at a critical stage of transformation of its development. There is a high demand for resources from 4G network construction and optimization as well as business development, retention of existing customers, mobile Internet development and the deployment of wireline broadband. The Group endeavored in its promotion of low-cost, high-efficiency operations, deepened the transformation of its marketing and sales model and improved the efficiency and effectiveness of its marketing resource utilization.”

Operating revenue was RMB177.5 billion, up by 8.7% over the same period last year; of which, revenue from telecommunications services was RMB151.6 billion, up by 4.9% over the same period last year. EBITDA was RMB65.1 billion, up by 7.0% over the same period last year.