China's local governments roll out 5G specific plans
Updated 20:15, 02-Aug-2019

It's been barely two months since China started issuing commercial 5G licenses, and local governments are already planning to implement the new network over the next three years. Major mobile phone makers will also release their first 5G cell phones later this month.

Local governments in China are rushing on board with 5G. Guangdong Province and Beijing had already unveiled their three-year plans concerning 5G development before June 6, when the first commercial licenses for 5G were issued.

Meanwhile Jinan, the capital city of Shandong Province, was the first to come up with a two-year plan afterwards. Hunan Province and Shanghai followed suit one month later. Yunnan Province and Sichuan Province have offered their draft 5G development plans up for public opinion.

5G phones won't be sold until mid-August, but prices for the devices produced by the major manufacturers have already been revealed. The prices are not as high as expected, but they definitely belong to high-end models.

Experts say, with the maturity of the industry chain, prices will go down. They expect that some of the 5G phones will go below 2,000 yuan (about 288 U.S. dollars) in the second half of next year.

China's three major telecom companies – China Mobile, China Telecom and China Unicom – have been laying out their 5G networks mainly in about 40 to 50 first- and second-tier cities. The networks are expected to cover all third-tier cities next year as well.

Fees are another concern for people considering changing to 5G models. Experts say 5G will be cheaper than 4G in the long run. You might use 20 gigabytes now, but in the future you may use 40 to 50 gigabytes. So although your total expense will increase, the cost of one gigabyte will be cheaper.