Unicom Reaches 7M Target

The parent company of China Unicom Ltd. (HKSE: 0762; NYSE: CHU) claims to have signed more than 7 million CDMA subscribers as of December 25, thus reaching the target it set itself when it launched its CDMA network at the beginning of 2002. China United Telecommunications Corporation, known as the Unicom Group, comprises a number of operators, including China Unicom, which is listed in New York. China Unicom recently grew by "acquiring" some of its parent's operators for incorporation into the listed company (see Unicom Buys Nine Operators). Of the current 7 million users, more than 4 million are customers of the listed company. Having reached its 2002 target, the Unicom Group has already set itself an ambitious goal for 2003 (see Unicom Sets '03 CDMA Target). The coming year could make Unicom an increasing focus of attention in the wireless world, as it continues adding to its GSM and CDMA networks and subscribers side by side. Although it has not been confirmed, Unstrung believes the carrier will be the company that will trial Qualcomm Inc.'s (Nasdaq: QCOM) niche GSM1x system, which allows CDMA 1xRTT radio access using a GSM core network (see Qualcomm Hints at China Trial). — Ray Le Maistre, European Editor, Unstrung
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