China Unicom

China Unicom

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China Unicom or China United Netcom (Hong Kong) Ltd , ( ) is a Chinese state-owned telecommunications operator in the People's Republic of China
People's Republic of China
China , officially the People's Republic of China , is the most populous country in the world, with over 1.3 billion citizens. Located in East Asia, the country covers approximately 9.6 million square kilometres...

.

History


China Unicom was founded as a Government-owned corporation
Government-owned corporation
A government-owned corporation, state-owned company, state-owned entity, state enterprise, publicly owned corporation, government business enterprise, or parastatal is a legal entity created by a government to undertake commercial activities on behalf of an owner government...

, established on July 19, 1994, by the Ministry of Information Industry and approved by the State Council
State Council of the People's Republic of China
The State Council of the People's Republic of China , which is largely synonymous with the Central People's Government after 1954, is the chief administrative authority of the People's Republic of China. It is chaired by the Premier and includes the heads of each governmental department and agency...

.

Started as a wireless
Wireless
Wireless telecommunications is the transfer of information between two or more points that are not physically connected. Distances can be short, such as a few meters for television remote control, or as far as thousands or even millions of kilometers for deep-space radio communications...

 paging
Paging
In computer operating systems, paging is one of the memory-management schemes by which a computer can store and retrieve data from secondary storage for use in main memory. In the paging memory-management scheme, the operating system retrieves data from secondary storage in same-size blocks called...

 and GSM mobile operator, it currently provides a wide range of services including nationwide GSM mobile network, long-distance, local calling, data communication, Internet services and IP telephony in mainland China
Mainland China
Mainland China, the Chinese mainland or simply the mainland, is a geopolitical term that refers to the area under the jurisdiction of the People's Republic of China . According to the Taipei-based Mainland Affairs Council, the term excludes the PRC Special Administrative Regions of Hong Kong and...

, and has operated a CDMA network in Macau
Macau
Macau , also spelled Macao , is, along with Hong Kong, one of the two special administrative regions of the People's Republic of China...

 since 18 October 2006. As of the end of April 2008, the company had 125 million GSM subscribers and 43 million CDMA subscribers. As of November 2008 the CDMA operations have been moved to China Telecom
China Telecom
China Telecom Corp. Ltd. is a Chinese state-owned telecommunication company. It is the largest fixed line service and 3rd largest mobile telecommunication provider in the People's Republic of China.-Sectors:...

and UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications System
Universal Mobile Telecommunications System
Universal Mobile Telecommunications System is a third generation mobile cellular technology for networks based on the GSM standard. Developed by the 3GPP , UMTS is a component of the International Telecommunications Union IMT-2000 standard set and compares with the CDMA2000 standard set for...

) has just launched in major cities across China on May 17, 2009.

Compared to other mobile providers China Unicom is ranked as the world's third-biggest mobile provider. On 7 January 2009, China Unicom was awarded WCDMA
W-CDMA (UMTS)
W-CDMA , UMTS-FDD, UTRA-FDD, or IMT-2000 CDMA Direct Spread is an air interface standard found in 3G mobile telecommunications networks. It is the basis of Japan's NTT DoCoMo's FOMA service and the most-commonly used member of the UMTS family and sometimes used as a synonym for UMTS...

 license to expand its business to 3G
3G
3G or 3rd generation mobile telecommunications is a generation of standards for mobile phones and mobile telecommunication services fulfilling the International Mobile Telecommunications-2000 specifications by the International Telecommunication Union...

 telecommunication.

In July 2009, China Unicom signed a $700 million deal with infrastructure vendor Ericsson
Ericsson
Ericsson , one of Sweden's largest companies, is a provider of telecommunication and data communication systems, and related services, covering a range of technologies, including especially mobile networks...

 to upgrade the company's GSM network.

Merger with China Netcom


On June 2, 2008, China Unicom announced its intention to sell its CDMA business and assets to China Telecom
China Telecom
China Telecom Corp. Ltd. is a Chinese state-owned telecommunication company. It is the largest fixed line service and 3rd largest mobile telecommunication provider in the People's Republic of China.-Sectors:...

for a combined total of 110 billion RMB and to merge the remainder of the company, in a share swap valued at USD $56.3 billion (based on Unicom's stock last traded price) on June 2, 2008, with China Netcom
China Netcom
China Netcom, full name China Netcom Group Corporation Limited , abbreviated CNC, was a former telecommunication service provider in People's Republic of China...

. The CDMA business was officially moved to China Telecom
China Telecom
China Telecom Corp. Ltd. is a Chinese state-owned telecommunication company. It is the largest fixed line service and 3rd largest mobile telecommunication provider in the People's Republic of China.-Sectors:...

 in early November. It also continues the former China Netcom's and the former China Telecom's PHS
Personal Handy-phone System
The Personal Handy-phone System , also marketed as the Personal Access System and commercially branded as Xiaolingtong in China, is a mobile network system operating in the 1880–1930 MHz frequency band, used mainly in Japan, China, Taiwan, and some other Asian countries and...

mobile phone businesses.

In February 2000 China Unicom became incorporated
Incorporation (business)
Incorporation is the forming of a new corporation . The corporation may be a business, a non-profit organisation, sports club, or a government of a new city or town...

 in Hong Kong
Hong Kong
Hong Kong is one of two Special Administrative Regions of the People's Republic of China , the other being Macau. A city-state situated on China's south coast and enclosed by the Pearl River Delta and South China Sea, it is renowned for its expansive skyline and deep natural harbour...

 and was listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange
Hong Kong Stock Exchange
The Hong Kong Stock Exchange is a stock exchange located in Hong Kong. It is Asia's third largest stock exchange in terms of market capitalization behind the Tokyo Stock Exchange and the Shanghai Stock Exchange and fifth largest in the world...

 on 22 June 2000. They are an MVNO running on Three's 2G network. They are the only provider to sell SIMs
SIMS
- Last name :* Andrew Sims, American rapper, member of the Doomtree collective* Ashton Sims, Australian rugby league footballer* Charles Sims , British painter* Christopher A. Sims, American economist* Ernie Sims, NFL linebacker...

 that provide native phone numbers on both sides of the border (charging slightly higher rates than local while in the mainland, but cheaper than roaming
Roaming
In wireless telecommunications, roaming is a general term referring to the extension of connectivity service in a location that is different from the home location where the service was registered. Roaming ensures that the wireless device is kept connected to the network, without losing the...

 with another provider- in some cases even cheaper than a SIM from another Chinese province if being used in Shenzhen
Shenzhen
Shenzhen is a major city in the south of Southern China's Guangdong Province, situated immediately north of Hong Kong. The area became China's first—and one of the most successful—Special Economic Zones...

/Guangzhou
Guangzhou
Guangzhou , known historically as Canton or Kwangchow, is the capital and largest city of the Guangdong province in the People's Republic of China. Located in southern China on the Pearl River, about north-northwest of Hong Kong, Guangzhou is a key national transportation hub and trading port...

 area).

Joint Investment With Telefonica


As of January 2011, China Unicom and Telefonica strengthened their strategic alliance and agreed on a new mutual investment. The companies agreed to deepen their cooperation in areas such as procurement, mobile service platforms, service to MNC's wholesale carriers, roaming, technology, among others, where both companies have been cooperating since the signature of their strategic alliance agreement.

Stock holding


China Unicom (BVI) Limited effectively holds 40.92% of the company, and China Netcom Group (BVI) Limited holds 29.49%,

In 2009, China UniCom agreed a $1Bn cross-holding with Spanish
Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

-based operator Telefonica
Telefónica
Telefónica, S.A. is a Spanish broadband and telecommunications provider in Europe and Latin America. Operating globally, it is the third largest provider in the world...

. In January 2011, the two partners agreed a further $500M tie-up in each other, which following completion in late 2011, Telefonica will hold a 9.7% stake in China UniCom, while China Unicom will own 1.4% of the Spanish firm.

The residual shares are traded on the Shanghai
Shanghai
Shanghai is the largest city by population in China and the largest city proper in the world. It is one of the four province-level municipalities in the People's Republic of China, with a total population of over 23 million as of 2010...

, Hong Kong
Hong Kong
Hong Kong is one of two Special Administrative Regions of the People's Republic of China , the other being Macau. A city-state situated on China's south coast and enclosed by the Pearl River Delta and South China Sea, it is renowned for its expansive skyline and deep natural harbour...

 and the New York
New York
New York is a state in the Northeastern region of the United States. It is the nation's third most populous state. New York is bordered by New Jersey and Pennsylvania to the south, and by Connecticut, Massachusetts and Vermont to the east...

 stock exchange
Stock exchange
A stock exchange is an entity that provides services for stock brokers and traders to trade stocks, bonds, and other securities. Stock exchanges also provide facilities for issue and redemption of securities and other financial instruments, and capital events including the payment of income and...

s. Both majority shareholders are state controlled enterprises.

On January 2011 China Unicom and Telefónica
Telefónica
Telefónica, S.A. is a Spanish broadband and telecommunications provider in Europe and Latin America. Operating globally, it is the third largest provider in the world...

 S.L strengthened their strategic partnership through a new share exchange.

See also

  • Communications in the People's Republic of China
    Communications in the People's Republic of China
    The People's Republic of China possesses a diversified communications system that links all parts of the country by Internet, telephone, telegraph, radio, and television...

  • List of companies of the People's Republic of China
  • Telecommunications industry in China
    Telecommunications industry in China
    The telecommunications industry in China is dominated by three state-run businesses: China Telecom, China Unicom and China Mobile. The three companies were formed by a recent revolution and restructuring launched in May 2008, directed by Ministry of Information Industry , Nationals Development and...


External links