• State-owned telecom operators of China have turned to 4G services to provide better connection to subscribers.

State-owned telecom operators of China have turned to 4G services to provide better connection to subscribers. (Photo : www.digitaltrends.com)

China's three state-owned telecom operators have turned to "4G+" mobile services, a fourth-generation (4G) wireless service that offers faster connections, in a bid to lure subscribers, according to tech blog Guancha01.

The blog said that the three state-owned telecoms have spurred China to build its wireless network faster than any other country in the world, despite its late start in introducing 4G services at the end of 2013.

Like Us on Facebook

In response to subscribers' demand for faster wireless access to the Internet, the three operators--China Mobile, China Telecom and China Unicom--announced trial 4G+ service programs.

By adopting 4G+ services, the operators can differentiate themselves from their competition without having to apply for a new license, according to the blog.

Launched in 17 cities in August, China Telecom's Tianyi 4G+ service is supported by several high-end smartphone models equipped with Qualcomm's Snapdragon 810 processor, such as Mi Note and LeTV's Le 1 Pro.

The company also said that the 80 models that will be released in 2016 would be compatible with the Tianyi 4G+ service.

On the other hand, China Unicom chair Wang Xiaochu said that the company has lagged behind because they have not decided between developing 3G and 4G services before. Wang said that the company will fully migrate to 4G, and its carrier aggregation will first be tested in Jiangsu and Shanxi Provinces.

China Mobile has TD-LTE standard that offers a slower Internet speed than the FDD-LTE standard of China Telecom and China Unicom. But the company announced trial 4G+ operations in Shanghai, Jiangsu, Anhui, Guangdong and Zhejiang, after it tripled the speed in carrier aggregation tests to support LTE-A Cat 9 standards.

As previous market research showed that connection speed is becoming an important factor for mobile phone consumers, especially in mid- to high-end markets, smartphone makers are expected to introduce products with faster connection.

The report said that this will be crucial as shipment growth in China's smartphone market is likely to drop from 19.7 percent in 2014 to 1.2 percent this year.

The report added that chipmakers will also be competing for technological advances as Qualcomm has unveiled a Snapdragon 820 processor, integrated with an X12 LTE modem that has a maximum download speed of 600MB per second.

According to the blog, smartphone makers will compete to secure supplies of Snapdragon 820 chips for their top-end models in 2016.