China Backhaul Capex Spending to Top $10 Billion in 2009-2010

Three Chinese operators to spend more than $10 billion on mobile backhaul in 2009-2010 as they build out their 3G networks, says Unstrung Insider

Nov 18, 2009

With three mobile operators now scrambling to build out 3G networks in China based on three different access standards, investment in backhaul equipment in China will exceed $10 billion in 2009-2010, according to the latest report from Unstrung Insider (, a paid research service from TechWeb's Unstrung (

Mobile Backhaul in China: Sizing the Market Opportunity outlines and forecasts the backhaul market in mainland China, both nationally and regionally, and explores and analyzes the current backhaul arrangements and future plans of China's three major operators: China Mobile, China Unicom, and China Telecom. The report also presents a comprehensive analysis of 10 large and small backhaul technology suppliers in mainland China.

For a list of companies analyzed in this report, please see:

"The concurrent arrival of 3G/beyond third generation (B3G) mobile networks, mobile data services, and all-IP networks is putting much higher demand on mobile backhaul," notes Xuefei Peng, research analyst with Unstrung Insider and author of the report. "Operators are seriously considering how to build upgradeable, reliable mobile backhaul installations that can carry different new and old mobile services at lower opex and capex."

As one of the fastest growing telecom market in the world, China attracts great attention, Peng says. "In China, 2G and 3G networks will coexist for the foreseeable future, which means mobile backhaul deployment must accommodate a mix of network and technology types," he adds. "3G deployments further raise the heat, while mobile backhaul takes approximately 25 percent of the whole mobile network investment."

Key findings of Mobile Backhaul in China: Sizing the Market Opportunity include:

  --  China's mobile operators are expected to spend more than $10 billion
      on backhaul capex in 2009 and 2010.
  --  Spending on TD-SCDMA backhaul by China Mobile will decline in 2010
      because of strong buildout activity prior to the 2008 Olympics.
  --  China Unicom is expected to spend $1.4 billion on backhaul for its
      WCDMA network this year, increasing to $2.2 billion in 2010.
  --  Although CDMA is likely to lag both TD-SCDMA and WCDMA in usage, China
      Telecom is expected to spend $3.5 billion on CDMA backhaul in 2009 and

  --  Though China's operators employ three different 3G standards, only one
      is likely to emerge as dominant: TD-SCDMA or WCDMA.

Mobile Backhaul in China: Sizing the Market Opportunity is available as part of an annual single-user subscription (12 monthly issues) to Unstrung Insider, priced at $1,595. Individual reports are available for $900 (single-user license).

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