by Xinhua writer Tan Jingjing
SAN DIEGO, Sept. 27 (Xinhua) -- China is "in very good direction" in deploying 5G networks, Steve Mollenkopf, chief executive officer (CEO) of U.S. technology and chip giant Qualcomm Inc. said.
China is very progressive in the speed at which it is rolling out 5G networks, especially "in the number of base stations it is launching in the first year of 5G deployment," Mollenkopf told Xinhua in a recent roundtable interview at its headquarters here.
China officially approved 5G commercial services in June, marking the start of a smart new era as the application of the superfast wireless technology helps connect more things, services and market players.
"China is a very important market for Qualcomm, not only because of its domestic market, but also because more and more of the supply chains of the handset industry is now based in China," Mollenkopf said.
Qualcomm is actively working not only with major Chinese carriers to support 5G deployment, but also with Chinese handset partners to make sure they are ready for the launch of 5G, Mollenkopf said.
"There are real opportunities as 5G continues to roll out worldwide, for some of the large Chinese handset OEMs (Original Equipment Manufacturer) to look for an opportunity to grab share," he said.
China's OnePlus, a Shenzhen-based smartphone company whose high-end products are little known outside a tech-savvy niche, entered the U.S. market last year with the backing of Qualcomm and U.S. mobile operator T-Mobile.
Frank Meng, chairman of Qualcomm China, told Xinhua China was behind other key markets in the deployment of 3G and 4G networks. "However, the rapid rollout of 5G networks in China has put the country at the frontline of the global mobile technology evolution."
In June, the Chinese government granted commercial-use 5G licenses to the country's top three telecom operators -- China Telecom, China Mobile and China Unicom, as well as China Broadcasting Network.
"The move will further accelerate China's deployment of 5G networks, terminal devices, applications and services," Meng said.
He said Qualcomm's cooperation with Chinese partners is a good example for U.S.-China high-tech cooperation.
Meng expressed his hope to further strengthen strategic cooperation with Chinese partners in wireless communications, and jointly push forward global 5G deployment and evolution.
Qualcomm entered the Chinese market in the 1990s and has been operating in China for over 20 years.