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China's mobile phone users top 1.1 B

By Kim Young-gyo

HONG KONG, Dec. 28 — The number of mobile phone subscribers in China exceeded 1.1 billion last month as most Chinese people now consider cell phones a daily necessity, a government report showed Friday.

The Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology said in the report that the number of Chinese mobile phone users totaled 1.104 billion as of the end of November, which is equivalent to 78.6 percent of the country's population estimated at 1.4 billion.

The number of Chinese users of more advanced third-generation (3G) mobile phones reached 220 million, making up about 20 percent of the total mobile phone users in China.

The number of mobile internet users rose to 750 million, as the country added 111 million new users during the January-November period.

China's mobile carrier saw steady growth in its revenue, which increased 11 percent on-year to 7.24 trillion yuan (US$ 1.16 trillion) in the first eleven months of 2012.

An increasing number of Chinese mobile subscribers are using high-end smartphones.

According to mobile analytics firm Flurry last month, China will soon usurp the U.S. as the largest market for Apple Inc.'s iOS and Google Inc.'s Android mobile operating systems.

As of the end of October, China's iOS and Android users reached 167 million, compared to 181 million in the U.S.

China had a 293 percent growth rate in iOS and Android devices added between October 2011 and October 2012, Flurry said.

The ranking will change in early 2013 as China's triple-digit growth rate easily outpaces that of the U.S., which has a maturing smartphone market, it said.(PNA/Yonhap)

LOR/MEC

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